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After spending 3 months living in the tiny hamlet of Bardou, located in the Cevennes mountains of Southern France, Amy and Tom Valens created a photo essay that captures the spirit in which the village was brought back to life. Over a span of 40 years Klaus and Jean Erhardt developed a small stone monument to the appropriate use of local materials that their medieval predecessors perfected, and to the creative energy of a new generation of inhabitants.
Tom's evocative photos and Amy's lyric recounting combine to make a story that will delight both the initiate to medieval building practices and life styles, and those who have walked these paths many times.
Klaus Erhardt died on July 20, 2009, and Jean passed February 9, 2016, but Bardou continues under the guidance of Betsy Erhardt-Nolan. Klaus and Jean's enthusiasm for this project spurs us to make the story of their life work available to a broader readership.
Tom Valens has been involved in film and video since the mid 1960’s, working as a cameraman and editor for television news and documentary departments, for independent producers, and for himself. As editor, his films have won local and national Emmys as well as an Academy Award nomination. Amy Valens retired from teaching elementary school in 2006 to join Tom in their film production company Tamalpais Productions.