Nora Rupp (CH, 1981) lives and works in Lausanne. She studied photography at the School of Applied Arts in Vevey. Since 2010, she is the museum photographer of the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Lausanne. At the same time, she develops and exhibits several artistic projects, such as Sentier Battu, Ako and Henro, in different towns (Paris, Lausanne, Nyon, Assens), and she continues her self-portrait work which she started in 2003.
Going on pilgrimage has been a trend for a few years. The “Camino de Santiago” is not an old-fashioned route anymore. On the contrary, it attracts today’s middle-class youth. This migratory flow has caught Nora Rupp’s attention. From her doorstep in Switzerland, she walked towards pilgrims from May to August 2008, all the way to Santiago.
Nevertheless, her project, “Sentier Battu”, does not aim at showcasing her own travel; she rather wishes to present a community, the pilgrims’, in their environment, the path. Alone, with his/her partner, friends, family, the pilgrim has many shapes: there is a variety of looks, appearances, social statuses and nationalities.
The project leaves aside the religious or mystical dimension that could be linked to such pilgrimage. In spite of the serious topic, Nora Rupp aims at communicating some kind of lightness in her pictures and at offering a representation of the pilgrim that questions prejudices. The viewer is thus free to create or re-create an open image of the pilgrim.