Ancient and Modern

Development of our towns and cities is a fact of life. It also extends to Alpine villages like Zermatt. I can’t remember when I last visited Zermatt and didn’t see the village’s skyline interrupted by at least one crane: the primary indicator of a building site.

Today’s first image is of a deserted and dilapidated building at Schwarzsee high above Zermatt. Even in its current state of neglect it still manages to retain character.


The second is a thin vertical slice of a new extensive building in the centre of Zermatt. This building delights me. It sits comfortably among older buildings, combining features of the village’s older styles with bold design elements such as this highly visible staircase.


If only all development was as sympathetic to its environment.

An alternative image of this staircase has been posted in ‘Wintry Reflections’.


About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'. I'm not averse to manipulating images to produce derivatives that may sometimes be far removed from the original.
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14 Responses to Ancient and Modern

  1. Love the contrast between the two structures but I’m certainly more drawn to the first building with only the one window shutter open. It has so much character. Terrific shots Andy.


  2. Rich McPeek says:

    Great shots Andy! Love the first building and it’s character as Edith stated. Love your pov on the 2nd shot as well! Nicely done!


  3. rigmover says:

    Both great shots but i love that old building.


  4. oneowner says:

    I think you can do an entire series on each of these buildings. They’b both wonderfully photogenic.


  5. Phillip says:

    Interesting contrast between the two buildings. I agree that the first one is a more appealing image. However, as comfort goes I’d typically rather stay in the second. Which I guess is why they built it. Still on some level there is a loss when a area becomes more commercial. If only we could have our cake and eat it too! By the way, I love the first one.


    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Phillip. Thankfully there are still old areas of Zermatt that are untouched and preserved. A lot of the new building is infilling spaces between existing properties. But as to comfort – no contest there! Although the property shown would be pretty expensive, it is still possible to stay in Switzerland (and Zermatt) at affordable prices.


  6. These are wonderful shots, Andy. As much as I love modern architecture, I have to give the nod to the old, character-filled building. 🙂 Good stuff!


  7. Nice photographs, Andy! I’m particularly taken by the bottom fourth of the second one, where the reflected triangular peaks of the mountains echo the triangles of the window frames and the stairs. Also like the complementary colors of the little orange light in the blue stairwell. I don’t suppose you took another shot of just that area?


    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Linda – good to hear from you. Well yes, I do have another image. It was impossible to fit the whole staircase into one shot, so I took two. I experimented with a photomerge but that made the resulting image ridiculously thin and tall and rather unsuitable for the Blog. I chose to publish the ‘upper two-thirds’ image. So I do have another image of the bottom section and I will take a close look at that and see what I can make of that on its own. Stay tuned – Something might emerge next week!


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