Pierre Hybre


La vie sauvage

La vie sauvage / The wild life

I met on a mountain path a young man and his wolf. His name was Inti, the Inca’s name of the Sun god. I remember a sentence of Inti « here it is simple to live happily ».

In this serie, I explored the less populated territories. I wanted to explore the most remote parts of France, to see if there were still places away from modernity, where one could feel far from the issues of our time and where the natural beauty of the landscape would be a refuge. For two years, I explored the Pyrenees mountains, in Ariege, at the French-Spanish border. At the the end of the road, the summits mark the end of the country. One cannot go any further. Its hidden valleys, its forests, its hard nature attracts men and women who come to get a different perspective of life. I have photographed “A Wild Life.”

Ariege is now one of the least populated department of France and one of the poorest too. Country with character to the tough and wild nature, these small remote Ariege mountains have welcome in the 70s lots of hippies and communities. Even if it belongs to the past, a free spirit remains here, where everyone has a place, where everyone can experiment his own way of life outside society's strict norms where community spirit is strong. I portrayed neo-rural people, people who came to start over, kids of the lands, those with declining lifestyle, atypical people. They make these valleys, these forests and these mountains small villages, a place apart where each and everyone in their proper way tries to preserve this freedom to live. Nature is at the center of their lives. I have portrayed «The Wild Life».


La vie sauvage

Je rencontrai au détour d’un chemin un jeune gars et sa louve. Il s’appelait Inti, du nom du dieu solaire Inca. Une phrase d’Inti me revient aujourd'hui en mémoire  - pour vivre heureux, ici c’est simple .

Avec cette dernière série, je continue d’explorer les territoires à la marge. j’avais commencé il y a quelques temps à identifier les endroits les plus reculés de France, à voir s’il existait des lieux à l’écart de la modernité où l’on pourrait se sentir loin des tracas pesants de notre époque et où la beauté naturelle du paysage serait un refuge. Évidemment, même si cela reste une utopie, il reste bien encore quelques lieux qui correspondent à cette idée. j’ai voyagé dans les montagnes de l’Ariège qui viennent buter contre la frontière avec l’Espagne. Nous sommes au bout de la route, les sommets marquent la fin du territoire. Impossible d’aller plus loin. Ces vallées cachées, ces forêts, cette nature rude attirent depuis des décennies des hommes et des femmes venus chercher une autre perspective de vie.  

L’Ariège est aujourd’hui l’un des département les moins peuplés de France et aussi l’un des plus pauvres. Pays de caractère à la nature rude et sauvage, ces petites montagnes reculées de l’Ariège ont accueillies dans le courant des années 70 un grand nombre de hippies et de communautés. Même si cela appartient au passé, Il reste ici un esprit libre où chacun a sa place, où chacun peut expérimenter un mode de vie parfois à la marge de société, où  l’esprit d’entraide est fort. J’ai photographié ces néo-ruraux, ces personnes venues se reconstruire, ces enfants du pays attachés à leur terre, ces décroissants, ces personnages atypiques, un ensemble de personnes qui font de ces vallées encaissées, de ces forêts et de ces hameaux de montagne, un endroit à part où ils essayent chacun à leur façon de préserver une vie faite de liberté. La nature est au centre de leur vie. J’y ai photographié « La Vie sauvage ».


La vie sauvage

1741m. The road ends here, behind the summits starts Spain.
Inti and Loula, a she wolf.  It was the 70s and the communities flourished in Ariege. Inti is a child of hippies, neo-rurals who settled in these mountains of Couserans. Until the age of 8 years he lived in the middle of the forest and the animals.
The tepee of Magalie,  Olivier and their two little girls. Bernède’s Valley, Ariege.
Sophie and Derek, Ariège. Derek is from England, younger he wanted to live a bohemian’s life and had a saltimbamque’s one. After many travels he came in the Pyrenees in 2001  and lived for some time in a tepee.
Behind the peaks of Pyrénées starts Spain.
Today Derek lives his artist’s life  in a small mountain hamlet with Sophie, who also is an artist and musician. They met  in London.
Inti with his girl friend  Maéva. It was the 70s and the communities flourished in Ariege. Inti is a child of hippies, neo-rurals who settled in these mountains of Couserans. Until the age of 8 years he lived in the middle of the forest and the animals.
the house of the old Jean, the shaman.
The old John,  kind of «ariégeois» shaman is old,  around 70-80. He lives in a very old house that has never been modernized, hidden in the middle of  the vegetation. He eats almost exclusively wild plants and he also has a small garden and 4 chicken.
The jumper of the old Jean  being dry.  Denying the modernity, living very simply, no washing machine, no dryer, no TV ...
Sandrine and Thomas. Sandrine lives in a small valley isolated. She is a high mountain guide.
A Couserans’s barn, time seems to stand still here. Ariege.
the little wolf of the old Jean.  Inti gave him the son of his female wolf. The young wolf is mad, half-wild and remains chained.
Gerald is 29 years old. It’s a man from the economic crisis, a native from  Toulouse, he has from time to time taken refuge in a modest small mountain’s house where his grandmother lived. He comes to switch off,  to escape from the city and their problems
The sheepfold Isabelle , George and their two Merens.Georges for some time camped in a field located down there. The conditions were very hard. After  he rented a small sheepfold  for a few years, his neighbor finally sold him for nothing.
Isabelle, 46, and Georges, 57.   A couple of neorural  who chose to live with the minimum, for a life in quasi-autonomy, with from time to time small seasonal jobs. Isabelle  worked 13 years as an executive secretary before she made a «burn out» .
Georges, 57.
L’Arize. Couserans, Ariège.
Inti and Maeva’s house. Inti spent two years in a small cabin in  a Tibetan Buddhist center located in the same area of  Ariege. In a search for  a simple and quiet life.
Salat’s valley.
Nino, Virginia’s last boy. Virginia, 33,  is raising alone  her four children.
I met Alexandre in 2013,  known as Lutin by all. He just spent  3 years alone in the mountains, with a garden, few animals, eating chestnuts and mushroom. A New Age traveler of the  mountains. It is now installed in his old van, without no engine.
The camp of the rat bridge, Saint-Girons. It is in this" area for the Travellers" Pouet settled with relatives and friends, his fiancee Pomme, Paquita his mother, Priscilla, Marius called the Fat, Gonzo the Spanish, Lutin...
Gypsy children of the  camp Pont du Rat, Saint-Girons.
Pouet and his fiancee Pomme, he come from a real circus family. With  gypsy blood,  from Ariege too and , if I understood, also from south dakota Native, the man has character and resources. They settled here on the ground of Bridge Rat with his caravan.
Chloe, a young girl from the region. The Bridge of the Rat.
The stadium of Seix. Here, the Rugby is a religion.
Marius  The FAT, an acrobat living in a deep valley of Pyrénées, also joined the small community of Pouet’s circus. (Pouet  the gypsy, circus performer).
Gonzo, a spanish acrobat.
the gypsy camp of The Bridge Rat.
The river Arac.
 Pierre grew up  in a Parisian suburb, he comes from a real middle class family. He moved  in Massat,. This  village to the hippie past hosts many neo-rurals, is a place a  out of time and consumerism. Pierre works sometimes as  seasonal caterer.
The small village of Massat and its alternative spirit was created in the afterwards of "may 1968", a center of libertarian utopia and community experiences.
I met Derek in Saint-Girons’market, with his guitar, a Marshall amp wearing a flower shirt, a John Lennon attitude, he was doing his show, the gawker gave him a few coins. A real vintage hippie look. Derek is from England.
The yurt of Magalie and Olivier. Bernède’s Valley, Ariege.
The garden of Magalie and Olivier, Bernède’ s valley.
 Maurice and his dog «Pitchoune».. His house is now his old Ford Transit van. Maurice does not stay in the same place, he loves to travel, moving from one place to another, he  comes regularly in Saint-Girons, in this quiet place of Ariège.
A Mérens, the Ariégeoi's horse. A native from the Upper Valley of the Ariege in the Pyrenees, the horse Merens has an amazing morphological convergence with horses Magdalenian (13,000 years) represented in the Ariege Niaux cave.