Hidden Bunkers

Hidden Bunkers

Tuesday August 27, 2019 Written by Smith

Swiss Hidden Bunkers

At a cursory glance, it might seem that Switzerland was relatively unscathed by the wars that devastated its neighbours during the 20th century. But Leo Fabrizio's photos of its secret defences reveal just how much was going on under the surface.

Although Switzerland was technically neutral during World War II, the small state often found itself caught in the crossfire between Axis and Allied countries, who flanked it on all sides. Worried for its security but not wanting to show their hand, they decided to build hundreds of defensive bunkers that would blend into its mountainous landscape undetected. To achieve this, the Swiss employed artist and theatre set designers as architects of war.

Swiss Hidden Bunkers

Swiss Hidden Bunkers

Some bunkers were painted to look like rocks and mountains (one apparently had movable boulders that gave way to an aircraft runway), while others were affixed with strange metal 'branches' that give the impression they were part of some Tim Burton-esque forest.

Not all countries would put such an emphasis on blending in. For a contrast, check out the concrete forts that mark Albania’s landscape like a bad case of acne. Goes to show, even countries paranoid about national security could stand to better fund the arts.

Swiss Hidden Bunkers Smith Journal 4