We just watched the excellent film “Manufactured Landscapes” by Jennifer Baichwal which features the work of Edward Burtynsky. His astonishing images are at once intensely beautiful and deeply disturbing, capturing landscapes altered through human activity. Landscapes scarred by extraction,transformed for production or covered with waste. The film gives us a startling view of the enormous scale and far-reaching impacts of our ever-increasing mass production and consumption. When describing his work Burtynsky explains, “These images are meant as metaphors to the dilemma of our modern existence; they search for a dialogue between attraction and repulsion, seduction and fear. We are drawn by desire – a chance at good living, yet we are consciously or unconsciously aware that the world is suffering for our success. Our dependence on nature to provide the materials for our consumption and our concern for the health of our planet sets us into an uneasy contradiction. For me, these images function as reflecting pools of our times.”
A potent reminder of the power or art to raise consciousness.