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Of grapes & Men VINE GROWING during the covid-19 PANDEMIC

An ongoing one-year feature story from May 2020 until May 2021

photography by matthieu alexandre

text by marjolaine edouard

(France, 2020) From spring confinement to the autumn harvest season : this feature story documents four organic viticulture estates of the famous “Coteaux-du-Layon” in the Val-de-Loire, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Four unique stories in the context threatening an unprecedented health, economic and social crisis.

"During the spring lockdown, we heard on the radio the call of farmers in need of labor."
Volunteers with unusual profiles responded to the call of a winegrower in need of labor. They are students or employees, their studies or their jobs are suspended due to lockdown.
"We volunteered and got hired as wine workers. That was the start of the reportage."
Harvest during the Covid-19 crisis

This photo essay intends to document this particular year 2020 following the rhythm of the vine's cycle between two confinements. It also aims at highlighting the vine growing ancestral gestures since humans have always cultivated the vine.

In organic vineyards flowers and ladybugs are commons
Isn't there something reassuring in the fact that the Earth continues to provide food and drink, that is, grapes and wine, as our economy falters and is almost at a standstill ?
From novels by Steinbeck to songs by Springsteen... A history of workers.

The recent Covid crisis has raised awareness of our limits, of the limits of our economic and production system, and of the need to initiate a decrease, a greener consumption, more respectful of nature. Through organic viticulture, these women and men have already taken the lead and show us the path.

This story invites us to reflect on the place of humans in nature and perhaps to walk in the footsteps of these men and women who cultivate their land with love.
Workers at the edge or at the heart of our civilisation ?

The complete feature story includes 200 photos and a text "During the lockdown we volunteered and got hired as wine workers" (20,000 characters, French only at the moment).

This photo essay has not yet been published and we are looking for a media that would like to distribute or publish it.

All photographs copyrighted © matthieu alexandre / inTERREviews.fr

texts © marjolaine edouard / inTERREviews.fr