What do you do when you do nothing ?

13.04 — 31.05.2020


Covid-19 shutdown borders between Switzerland and France

Francesco Arese Visconti

I am Italian. I migrated to Switzerland in 2007. My new home is located in the French-speaking part of Switzerland, between Canton Vaud and Canton Geneva. I live five km. away from the French border. It is normal habit for those who live in the area to move indifferently between France and Switzerland. Normal feeling for the inhabitants of the area is not to be a foreigner in one or the other country. Customs are a political, not physical line.


As a consequence of actions taken against the spread of COVID-19, on March 16th 2020 the Swiss Confederation closed all its borders. The normal across-nations movement of the inhabitants of the area between Switzerland and France had to stop. What was a normal habit became an almost illegal action. As well as political, customs became a physical line as well.


This small photographic project documented those borders between France and Switzerland which were not really visible before the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease. These photographs constitute memory of a special event which hadn’t happened since WWII and that nobody of my generation has never experienced in his/her life. These photographs express the wish that, once re-opened, these borders will never close down for any reason.

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