Excerpt from Hinterlands Vol. 2 (Dec, 2021):

    “ The instruments are methodically distributed across the landscape as winter approaches, just before the snow starts to fall. As cattle herders and construction workers switch to their winter jobs as ski instructors and resort groundskeepers, they change their tools to a series of orange apparatus. Thousands of metres of netting, strategically placed to direct skiers away from dangerous drop-offs. Hundreds of bright orange poles and batons to point out unstable rock formations hidden beneath the snow. Ribbons, warning signs and ropes to close off avalanche zones. Plastic coated foam buffers cushion high speed crashes into hazardous obstacles - pine trees, farm buildings, lift pylons and snow cannons.

The apparatus are shades of bright orange and red, the international colour of warning, easy to pick out in a blizzard. In the right conditions the instruments reflect an other-wordly fluorescent orange glow onto the crisp white snow and are often the only points of reference in this low-contrast landscape. Human logic permeates the terrain, the colourful apparatus seeks to codify and to control the alpine environment for sports and leisure. Acting as a symbol for the interface between the natural Alpine environment and man-made interventions. This fluorescent layer represents an unmistakably human intervention, and as such, is both easy to spot and easy to ignore or omit, a layer that can be switched off like a filter, as if the landscape has donned a uniform of high-vis clothing....” 

Hinterlands is a print magazine for rural realities and narratives from Europe’s countrysides. In reports, essayistic prose and photographic formats, hinterlands magazine presents local rural reporting and creates a transgressive understanding of rurality.

© 2022 Ness Lafoy