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Featured Photographer: Edward Burtynsky

This week’s photographer is Canadian Edward Burtynsky!

Burtynsky was born in 1955 of Ukrainian heritage in St. Catharines, Ontario. He received his BAA in Photography/ Media Studies from Ryerson University in 1982. He currently lives and works in Toronto.

He is known for his remarkable depiction of global industrial landscapes. His early work was taken with a large format field camera until he switched to digital in 2007. He often positions himself at high vantage points over the landscape using elevated platforms and more recently, helicopters. Burtynsky’s works can be found in museums in Ottawa (National Gallery), the Museum of Modern Art, Guggenheim Museum in New York, Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. He is an officer in the Order of Canada.  Check out his online portfolio.

Image by Edward Burtynsky

Manufacturing #15, China – Edward Burtynsky

Edward Burtynsky has a feature length documentary showcasing his work called Manufactured Landscapes. It’s available at the Ottawa Public Library. The full description of the film reads “Manufactured Landscapes is a feature length documentary on the world and work of renowned artist Edward Burtynsky. Burtynsky makes large-scale photographs of landscapes transformed by industry — quarries, recycling yards, factories, mines, dams. This film follows Burtynsky to China as he travels the country capturing the evidence and effects of China’s massive industrial revolution. This film extends the narratives of Burtynsky’s photographs, meditating on human impact on the planet without trying to reach simplistic judgments or reductive resolutions.

China Recycling #8 Plastic Toy Parts, Guiyu, Guangdong Province, China, 2004

China Recycling #8 Plastic Toy Parts, Guiyu, Guangdong Province, China, 2004 – Edward Burtynsky

…. mass consumerism… and the resulting degradation of our environment intrinsic to the process of making things to keep us happy and fulfilled frightens me. I no longer see my world as delineated by countries, with borders, or language, but as 7 billion humans living off a single, finite planet.”

– Edward Burtynsky

 

Following is a selection of Burtynsky’s images exploring the intricate link between industry and nature.

Dryland Farming #21 Monegros County, Aragon, Spain, 2010. Edward Burtynsky

Dryland Farming #21 Monegros County, Aragon, Spain, 2010 – Edward Burtynsky

Highway #1 Los Angeles, California, USA, 2003. Edward Burtynsky

Highway #1 Los Angeles, California, USA, 2003 – Edward Burtynsky

Manufacturing #17 Dead Chicken Processing Plant, Dehui City, Jilin Province, China, 2005. Edward Burtynsky

Manufacturing #17 Dead Chicken Processing Plant, Dehui City, Jilin Province, China, 2005 – Edward Burtynsky

Xiaolangdi Dam #1 Iceland, 2012. Edward Burtynsky

Xiaolangdi Dam #1 Iceland, 2012 – Edward Burtynsky

Nickel Tailings #34 Sudbury, Ontario 1996. Edward Burtynsky

Nickel Tailings #34 Sudbury, Ontario, 1996 – Edward Burtynsky