Beatrix von Conta
Dérive des Rives 2012 Lyon © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2011, La Martre plage et route © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2011, Matapédia confluence Matapedia © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2011, Matapédia motel Restigouche avec voie ferrée © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2011, Gaspé, tentes parking © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2011, La Martre petits arbres au bord de la route © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2011, Percé © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2012, Murdochville carottes de forage de la mine de cuivre © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2012, Murdochville ciel qui descend © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2012 Murdochville Mont Copper remonte pentes © Beatrix von Conta
Le Grand Ecart 2012, Murdochville piste forestière © Beatrix von Conta
Born in Germany in 1949 but long settled in France, Beatrix von Costa is one of the photographers in residence at this year’s Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie in Gaspé. For 25 years, her central focus has been the fragility of the contemporary landscape. She points out its signs, without nostalgia or mannerism.
“In Gaspé the light is different than in Europe, which is gray. A more compact style of photography is required. I had to change the focal distance I ordinarily use in Europe. Here I discovered a larger sky, a larger landscape.”
In America, as elsewhere, von Conta does not seek out the traces of mankind. “I’m not here for the exploitation. I’m fascinated by the complexity of the landscape.” She’s looking to find the different levels, the stratifications left by both man and nature.
“There are people here who would take away the things that offend them, that which affects nature. Instead I see in this relationship a beauty that touches me. Things are more and more fragile... I’m performing a kind of data storage, for memory.”
She cares little for Impressionist games with light. “There’s no such thing as objectivity, of course. But I don’t like blurred images. I want my photographs to be as clear as possible.”
At the time this article went to press, von Conta’s photographs of Gaspé were still being developed. “I’m working with film. That requires time.”
Beatrix von Conta is represented by the Galerie Le Réverbère in Lyon.