A city in focus. Christina Schmidt from the Fotozentrum takes us on a tour of Winterthur.



The cycling paradise of Winterthur is also a centre of photography. Home to the Fotozentrum – consisting of the Fotomuseum Winterthur and the Fotostiftung Schweiz – the city is also one of the most internationally recognised centres of excellence for photography.


Winterthur is a treasure trove of art, history and nature. The medieval heart of the city is alive at all times of the day and is extremely photogenic. Culture has a long tradition in Winterthur. Its 17 museums are proof. Known far beyond Switzerland’s national borders, the Centre for Photography, is one of the city’s gems. It is a major attraction for locals and tourists alike.

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A selfie in Winterthur’s Sulzerareal

You’ll see them everywhere in Winterthur. This former industrial town is undergoing a renaissance. By “them” we mean the women and men who are looking for the perfect subject or just want to take a nice selfie for friends: Be it under the old crane in the Sulzerareal, on the new square by the Kesselhaus or on the Gallispitz with its panoramic view of Winterthur – after all almost anywhere in the city is the perfect place for a unique picture. All kinds of different gadgets are used to take photos: from mobile phones and traditional point-and-press cameras to professional photographic equipment on tripods.

The street art wall on Bahnmeisterweg has become a new photo hotspot. The artist Basil Girard created a huge graffiti piece there. His work brings nature to the city and the wall is already a hit as a background for selfies.

The new street art wall

From here a modern well-lit underpass takes you directly to Winterthur’s historic old town. The many idyllic alleys with their charming shops and friendly faces make the heart of the city a huge meeting place; and of course there are numerous subjects to photograph here as well. Cycling is popular in Winterthur. There are plenty of reasons why Winterthur is known as Switzerland’s bicycle city.

A city on the move.


Christina Schmidt, an art educator at Fotomuseum Winterthur, regularly cycles around the old town. She loves the fact that there are so many different things going on here, whether in terms of art and culture, or culinary delights and leisure activities. Just like photography itself, the city has seen a lot of change in recent years. Christina observes how different technologies are now used to take photos everywhere.

Christina Schmidt out and about in Winterthur’s historic old town.
Winterthur is a great place to photograph, for the visible ghosts of its industrial past standing in stark contrast to its natural environment.
Christina Schmidt, art educator at Fotomuseum Winterthur

Switzerland’s centre of excellence in photography.


Just a stone’s throw from the old town is where you’ll find Schmidt’s place of work, the Fotozentrum. This consists of two institutions, Fotomuseum Winterthur and Fotostiftung Schweiz. The Fotomuseum focuses primarily on contemporary photography and includes everyday photography.

Christina Schmidt reflects on the current exhibition at the Fotomuseum in Winterthur.

The function of the Fotostiftung is quite different. It has been focused on Switzerland’s photographic heritage for 50 years, looking after the bequests of photographers, archiving them and making everything accessible to the public through exhibitions and publications.

Switzerland’s photographic legacy. Pia Zanetti pays a visit to the Fotostiftung Schweiz.


A major exhibition dedicated to Swiss photographer Pia Zanetti opened in 2021. “For me, the exhibition was like a dream come true. The Fotostiftung is a place where photography is honoured.” It is a proud achievement to be allowed to exhibit here.

Christina Schmidt and Pia Zanetti
For her, the idea that photos live on and are used here is beautiful and quite unique.
Pia Zanetti, photographer
Christina Schmidt und Pia Zanetti, Winterthur