It comes as no surprise that the Swiss Confederation has awarded the Swiss Grand Award for Design to Ernst Scheidegger. Now eighty-eight years of age, he has been involved in numerous facets of the applied arts all his life. Core, however, was photography. Scheidegger's portraits of other artists have been published internationally for decades, particularly those of Alberto Giacometti with whom he cultivated a friendship that lasted over twenty years. Today, those images are considered icons of artist portraits.
The photographs he took as a photo journalist in India, Afghanistan, Myanmar, Thailand and Japan are permanent fixtures in our visual memory. For many years, Scheidegger held the position of picture editor for the weekend supplement of the Neue Zürcher Zeitung. He is also a noted book and exhibition designer, publisher, gallery owner, film author and painter.
His work is characterised by a strong element of curiosity, though a certain reserve and a respect for others are equally apparent. This feature is combined with a pronounced yet free sense of form. Summed up, this approach imparts a specific Swiss quality to his work that continues to be highly appreciated nowadays.