Patrick Lambertz: Chalets
Wide and gentlly sloping roof, spacious wooden rooms, warm fireplace with a fur carpet in front of it, comfort and romantics amidst the blizzard high up in the Alps, most probably Swiss Alps. This must me the picture imprinted in the mind when one thinks of a ‘chalet’. Patrick Lambertz gets back to the roots of the word and notion, which originally referred to the hut of a herder, and photographs ‘chalets’, devoid of clichés and stereotypes, against the background of winter minimalist landscape all around Switzerland.
Although Switzerland is a rather small state, there seem to be more stereotypes about it than about other countries in this world. Chocolate, watches, banks, cheese, Heidi, Mountains and Skiing, to name a few. One of the most common stereotypes is certainly the Chalet. Commonly associated with romantic timber mountain resorts, embedded in a sky-high mountain range and virgin snow. Inside a lit fireplace with a fur in front of it. But Switzerland is certainly much more diverse and contradictory at times as such clichés suggest. Chalet for example described a hut or barrack in its original meaning. And barrack in slang is associated with a ramshackle hut or cabin.
With this ironic twist in mind, Patrick Lambertz spent the last 4 years searching for this other side of Switzerland, mostly overlooked and glossed over by those stereotypes. Some kind of parallel universe, from which this photographic series emerged. Intentionally embedded into the discrete, abstract-minimalistic winter landscape the photographs focus on the forgotten side of Switzerland. While becoming the lead act now, it can’t be overlooked anymore. Freed from all distraction in the surroundings each objects’ character and charm is accentuated by the works.
About Patrick Lambertz
Patrick was born 1972 and grew up in Germany, Ghana and Belgium. He initially studied filmmaking in Berlin, working with artists like Wim Wenders, Rosa von Praunheim and Shirin Neshat. He later moved to Switzerland working for the brand X-BIONIC as Head of Marketing and COO. He started exhibiting his works when 18 years old and received awards for his early photography and work as a filmmaker. Today he lives in Switzerland with his wife and three kids.