About
257PH

Céline Clanet

Dam and Man in Savoy

2011

“It is not until a building has assumed this character, till it has been entrusted with the fame, and hallowed by the deeds of men (…) that its existence can be gifted with language and life.”

– John Ruskin, The Seven Lamps of Architecture, 1849

During one year, at the request of the FONDATION FACIM, and in close collaboration with Electricité De France, I walked the roads and the vast network of hydropower in the Beaufortain area, Savoy (French Alps).I climbed a few hills, explored every corner of the power plants, scrutinized every detail of the machines, and went through forbidden doors. From a Pelton turbine detail, to a large vision of a dam melted in the Alps mountains, I have punctuated these images with portraits of witnesses from the dams’ construction days.

Several times, I happened to find myself alone with these “quiet fortresses”, especially under inclement or snowy weather. During several hours, I walked tirelessly around the high pastures, or along the water reservoirs, the vault, looking for the best picture possible. Alone with these monumental constructions for miles around, I established a special relationship with them, almost intimate. In our mutual silence, I absorbed their impressive and reassuring presence, their high mountain fortified castles looking. And those great “shelters”, mine for a few hours, then kindly revealed to me some of their secrets.

Dam and Man in Savoy
Fishermen, Roselend dam
Dam and Man in Savoy
High mountain pastures, Saint-Guérin dam
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Girotte dam, vaulting maintenance
Dam and Man in Savoy
Brice Wong, engineer of Roselend dam-La Bâthie power plant from 1960 to 1962
Dam and Man in Savoy
Brice Wong, engineer of Roselend dam-La Bâthie power plant from 1960 to 1962
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam, lower facing
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam, upper facing
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Gittaz dam, service entrance
Dam and Man in Savoy
Jean Monin, controller at La Girotte dam from 1940 to 1946
Dam and Man in Savoy
Jean Monin, controller at La Girotte dam from 1940 to 1946
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam, upper facing detail
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Girotte dam, as seen from Colombe
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Girotte dam, buttresses
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Gittaz dam, maintenance tunnel
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam, vaulting foot
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Girotte dam
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam, at the end of winter, when the water retention is at its lowest level
Dam and Man in Savoy
Nino Manfiotto, workman at La Girotte dam from 1942 to 1949
Dam and Man in Savoy
Nino Manfiotto, workman at La Girotte dam from 1942 to 1949
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Girotte dam, lower facing of one of the vaultings
Dam and Man in Savoy
Saint-Guérin dam, lower facing of vaulting
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roselend dam, Méraillet buttresses
Dam and Man in Savoy
Jean-Pierre Blanc, alpagist (high mountain farmer), whom a part of the lands was flooded by the Roselend dam from 1959
Dam and Man in Savoy
Jean-Pierre Blanc, alpagist (high mountain farmer), whom a part of the lands was flooded by the Roselend dam from 1959
Dam and Man in Savoy
Beaufort power plant, penstock
Dam and Man in Savoy
Roengers power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Venthon power plant, engines room
Dam and Man in Savoy
Pelton turbine, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Valves room at the foot of the penstock, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Hydraulic machine, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Hydraulic machine, Villard-sur-Doron power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Controls room, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Engines room, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Pelton turbine, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Well of head valve, penstock, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Access tunnel to the starting valves, from La Bâthie power plant to the Roselend dam
Dam and Man in Savoy
Venthon power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Very high voltage station, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Very high voltage station, La Bâthie power plant
Dam and Man in Savoy
Elisabeth Viallet, farmer and elected representative in Beaufort during the Roselend dam construction from 1956 to 1961
Dam and Man in Savoy
Elisabeth Viallet, farmer and elected representative in Beaufort during the Roselend dam construction from 1956 to 1961
Dam and Man in Savoy
La Girotte dam
45°44'00.0"N 6°33'00.0"E

Location: Beaufortain, France

Posted: December 2017
Category: Photography

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