Emmanuel Breteau

© Christiane Soudy

Born in 1968 in Corbeil-Essonnes, he has lived and worked in Le Trièves in the department of Isère for close to thirty years. His passion for mountains brought him to work on the rural alpine world. He likes to photograph people by blending into their universe, like accompanying sheep breeders during eight days of moving to summer pastures, or sharing the everyday life of a team of Slovak woodcutters in the Vercors Massif. An extensive work on pastoralism made him take an interest in shepherds’ graffiti in the alpine tundra; he discovers then the existence of thousands of protohistorical engravings. Fascinated by the subject, he collaborates with archaeologists and sets out to travel the valleys of French, Swiss and Italian Alps for close to ten years, in order to make a complete overview of alpine cave art. For the occasion, he elaborates a nocturnal shooting technique.

Invited by the Prehistory Museum of Île-de-France, the photograph dived into the world of the engraved rocks of the Fontainebleau massif, imagining the authors of the mysterious drawings. These photographs are exhibited at the museum until November 2017.

His work was the occasion for many encounters and collaborations with archaeologists, historians, ethnologists and choreographers. His images were the objects of exhibitions and books such as Roches confidentes et Roches de mémoires. 5 000 ans d’art rupestre dans les Alpes and more recently Trièves, Tournant de siècle (November 2016).

Mémoire rupestre


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