Communes is a photographic essay by Raymond Depardon on the villages of the French Mediterranean inland region. Witnesses to history, these villages have long been abandoned, threatened by the “Nant concession”, a shale gas extraction project. After the inhabitants’ protestations, the project was finally abandoned in 2015. The villages have once again turned into living places, with their cobbled streets and old houses with jagged facades and scanty windows. Timeless havens of peace, where tranquility and cool prevail.
This new photo book gathers Raymond Depardon’s most recent series: the 80 black-and-white photographs that compose it were taken after the first lockdown, during the summer of 2020, in the south of the Massif Central in the French departments of Aveyron, Lozère, Gard, and Hérault. The book includes a text by Salomé Berlioux, president of the association Chemins d’Avenirs, the first association accompanying thousands of young people from rural areas in France.
Raymond Depardon, Communes
Publication Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris
Bilingual French/English version
Hardback, 28,5 × 36 cm, 128 pages
80 black-and-white photographs
With a text by Salomé Berlioux
Publication date: October 2021