Téo Becher was born in France and now lives in Brussels. His photographic work focuses on the complex relationship between nature and culture. His photographs suggest the trace of human intervention in different environments, transformed according to human needs. Charbon Blanc, her recent photobook published by Le Bec En L’air.
Maurienne’s mountains are marked with ambiguities, contradictions, oppositions. Nicknamed “the aluminum valley”, space is mastered and exploited there. From the numerous factories that were once scattered along the Arc river, only one is remaining, bordered by a highway – one of the only in the Alps – and soon by a high speed train line that however has risen up opposition among the inhabitants, mainly after suspicions of corruption and pollution. Even if a few ski resorts dot the summits, the main part of the space in Maurienne stands in the uninhabitable, thus matching the romantic image of a pure and sublime nature.
At first, I’ve felt the need of a physical experience of the landscape. Be in the mountain, walk, breath. It became like roaming this uninhabitable, what can be felt only by foot, at the closest to the topography, immersed in the landscape. Those two layers add and mix, like a recognition walk through the territory, to try and know every corner. T.B.