Valades ousitanes, architecture and regeneration
Only less than half a century has passed since the famous book by Nuto Revelli Il mondo dei vinti was published, in 1977. A symbolic work, which summed up with powerful evocative efficacy the dramatic process of depopulation and dissolution of traditional Alpine societies during the twentieth century. A process that centered around the valleys of Carnia, the south-east of France, and especially the Piedmont’s valleys of the Cuneo area, with drop-out rates that would reach as high as 80-90% of the population. A little over forty years have passed by since Revelli’s book was published, and a lot seems to have changed since then. Today many prestigious and successful tourist and winter destinations are experiencing a growing crisis in terms of image and public, whereas the once neglected Valades ousitanes live an unprecedented blooming season, focused on enhancing their trio of natural, historical, and cultural heritage. Maira Valley, Ostana in the Po Valley, Paraloup and Rittana in the Stura Valley, the upper Varaita Valley: rebirth is taking place in all the Occitan valleys, with interesting resettlement processes that were initiated by the so-called «new mountaineers». This renaissance of the Occitan valleys is accompanied by new forms of architecture that focus on the themes of recovery and reuse of their heritage, of dialectical confrontation with environmental and historical contexts, not forgetting contemporary and technological innovation.