Photographer Explores How Crypto Miners Repurposed Old Swiss Gold Mines

Old gold mines in Switzerland are reportedly being repurposed by miners of a different sort: crypto miners.

According to a Wired report, the small village of Gondo is undergoing a mining boom of sorts as crypto miners flock there, attracted by its low temperatures and cheap hydroelectric power.

Swiss crypto mining company Alpine Tech was the first of these digital prospectors to set up shop. From the windowless bunker filled with 900 GPUs with which it started in Gondo, the company has expanded its operations to several mining facilities across Europe.

Italian photographer Claudio Cerasoli visited Alpine Tech’s headquarters in Gondo last year to document the convergence between the town’s old mining history and the company’s digital mining operations.

From the beginning, I was fascinated by the similar terminology used in cryptocurrency and gold mining,” he said. “In both cases, despite the sophisticated technologies involved, there are small-scale, artisanal tech­niques to discover.

Cerasoli further explores these similarities in his series, The Gold of Gondo, where crypto mining machines are juxtaposed with photographs of Gondo’s abandoned gold mines.

Both gold miners in the past and these modern miners are motivated by the desire to discover a new world,” he mused. “And they both had to create innovative ways to achieve their purpose.