Cinéaste et ethnologue (1930-2013)
Selection of films (synoptical view of the films by subject) back
2008. HDCam, 16:9, colour, 85 min.This is the story of the life reborn of Ossona, a hamlet in Val d'Hérens in the Valais canton, which was abandoned in the sixties and has now become the pilot project for an agro-tourism site. From 2005 to 2008, we followed the restoration of this site listed as a sustainable development zone, and those involved in the project.
Some of them are aged between 14 and 16 years old and were born in [to the detail page]
1992. 16mm, Beta, VHS, colour, 28 min.Upon retirement, Arnold Golay, 91, a former watchmaker who once had learned to make a timepiece entirely by hand, became a toy maker. We follow his steps as he builds a toy cart.
1989. 16mm, Beta, VHS, colour, 29 min.The “tavillonneur” or shingle-maker cuts out and fits shingles into place. Shingles (called “tavillons” here) are one of the oldest methods of roofing or outside wall covering. There are no longer any official apprenticeships. Joseph Doutaz and Olivier Veuve have quite different techniques of cutting and placing their shingles.
1989. 16mm, Beta, VHS, colour, 26 min.The Bapst Brothers: Romain, Maurice and Jacques – whom we will also meet in The Gruyere Chronicle (produced in 1990) – are peasants and carriers and work with their father. In autumn and winter, they bid for the community’s wood, cut down the pine trees and bring down the logs through the snowy woods by horse-drawn sleigh.
1989. 16mm, Beta, VHS, colour, 30 min.As there are no longer any apprenticeships in wood turning in Switzerland, Marcellin Babey learned his craft from the former owner of his Lausanne workshop, and by going, on foot, to visit old turners in France and Spain. In the film he builds and plays on bagpipes.
1988. 16mm, colour, 35 min.Claude Lebet who should have become a minister as his father before him, studied lute-making in Cremona (Italy). Back in Switzerland, he founded his workshop at La Chaux-de-Fonds in the Jura mountains. The “Musici di Roma” launched his career by buying the first violin he made and helped him acquire his house. It takes but a month and a half to fashion a violin, but the relationship of musician [to the detail page]
1988. 16mm, Beta, VHS, colour, 27 min.Like his grandfather and his father before him, François Pernet is a mountain peasant and works with wood. He trained as a carpenter and cabinet maker and owns the last working sawmill in French-speaking Switzerland. He is a sculptor besides.
1988. 16mm, Beta, VHS, colour, 30 min.After a serious car accident, Michel Marlétaz’ reconversion began with a wood working course intended for mountain peasants. He now turns out small wooden hollow ware like spoons, bowls or butter-churns. He is the only craftsman who makes the large butter-churns used in the summer pastures.
1987. 16mm, colour, 44 min.The first of a series of seven films on wood crafts. Armand Rouiller, 80, mountain peasant, woodcutter, is the last craftsman in Switzerland to build sledges and rakes in the old-time way.
1987. 16mm, Beta, VHS, colour, 26 min.A reconstitution of all the stages needed to turn earth into pink sand. This method, that has disappeared since the beginning of the 20th century, allowed the peasants who built and looked after mountain chalets to extract sand from the soil on the spot to make their cement, avoiding all the difficulties of bringing up building materials from the valley.