Beat Hauser is interested in industrial archaeology and history of Europe. His special area is the brewing industry of Switzerland and the former German Democratic Republic. Since 2003 he is taking pictures of industrial areas and abandoned places within all Europe. On his web site SPERRZONE (www.sperrzone.net) he does not only present his own pictures, but also some information about the related factories and places as well as historical photo post cards, old letter heads, labels, advertisings to document the history of the factories.
Most pictures are taken in abandoned factories. Abandoned places and industrial ruins are generally seen as “spots of dirt” and people feel uncomfortable around them. Often such places have a very long and interesting history, which seems almost forgotten today. Instead of the activity of former days there is nothing but silence and emptiness. Instead of windows, black holes are staring out of the walls. But very often the architecture of elapsed eras is attractive and astonishing. In combination with the emptiness and beginning decay, such places often spread the impression of a dream world. Decay and nature give new structures to strictly geometric forms and lines, e.g. in production halls. Moisture, moss and rust give new colors to gray halls. Beat Hauser tries to capture these impressions with his photographs. Aesthetics of decay is illustrated in its huge variety from huge industrial plants to small details.