Danny MacAskill: Epecuén

From the highlands of his native Scotland to what goes inside his head, Danny MacAskill has always challenged the environment and how people perceive that you can interact with it... now with Epecuén he's found a landscape like no other in Argentina.

The history of Epecuén:

In 1985 the man-made dike protecting the Argentinian town of Epecuén was destroyed and a once bustling tourist town was wiped off the earth... until now that is. Epecuén has risen from the depths to become a tourist destination once more.
Epecuén was established in the 1920s by a handful of settlers and rapidly expanded in size thanks to the popularity of the therapeutic waters of the Lago Epecuén. The salty lagoon was said to be formed by the tears of a great Chief crying for the loss of his love.

By the 1950's Epecuén (Eternal Spring) had a permanent population of around 1,500 who would serve tourists coming mainly from Buenos Aires, seeking to cure their ailments and float about in the saline water of the lagoon. The mineral rich waters of Lago Epecuén are said to be able to cure depression, rheumatism, skin diseases and even diabetes. At its peak the town would cater for over 20,000 visitors annually, between November and March. Epecuén appeared to be on the up and up, but where there is salt, there was once water and some residents believed the water would one day return.

In 1985, after a long period of wet weather, the lagoon had swelled, and finally the dike protecting the town was breached. By 1995 the town was submerged beneath 33ft of corrosive water, and the residents and tourists were long gone.

This is not where the story ends. Due to climate change and resulting shifting weather patterns, in 2009 the waters began to recede and the town began to re-emerge from the depths. What remained of the once colourful town was now encrusted in a layer of salt, surrounded by the eroded signs of the town's past. The dead trees that line the street give the place an apocalyptic feel and the town is enjoying a renewed tourist pull thanks to its otherworldly atmosphere.

News spread of this rediscovered alien landscape, and in 2010 Epecuén was used in a remake of the classic British horror film And Soon The Darkness, and has been featured in many music videos.

The town even has a permanent population again... a population of one. Pablo Novak moved back to Epecuén and lives a solitary life amongst the ruins, cycling around with his pack of trusty dogs, and talking to the town's curious visitors who are flocking to the town in increasing numbers.

Source: Red Bull

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