nav-left cat-right
cat-right

The Anthropocene—Coming Soon to a Theater (and Museum, and Bookshelf) Near You = Seminar Tonight at DU

The Anthropocene—Coming Soon to a Theater (and Museum, and Bookshelf) Near You = Seminar Tonight at DU
Three artists have created an entire body of work to get to the heart of the ineffable human epoch.

“Log Booms #1”. Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, 2016

© Edward Burtynsky, courtesy Howard Greenberg and Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York / Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto

Anthropocene is a clunky word for an even more unwieldy concept. But props to the Merriam-Webster team who have given us a dictionary definition that’s easy enough to follow.

Anthropocene: (n.) The period of time during which human activities have had an environmental impact on the earth regarded as constituting a distinct geological age.

Try to list those planet-altering human activities, though, and you’ll quickly realize that you could go on forever. Even geologists, those who decide if the Anthropocene merits an official geologic epoch, disagree on which specific markers characterize this nebulous yet distinct time. (Plastic pollution, nuclear tests, concrete particles, artificial fertilizers, and even domestic chickens are all contenders.) Our impacts on the planet are so vast and multifaceted, there’s just no simple way to illustrate their scope.

“Dandora Landfill #3”. Plastics Recycling, Nairobi, Kenya, 2016

© Edward Burtynsky, courtesy Howard Greenberg and Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York / Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto

But filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal, photographer Edward Burtynsky, and cinematographer Nicholas de Pencier are giving it a try. Wisely, these collaborators don’t limit themselves to one approach or even one medium. The Anthropocene Project fuses photography, film, virtual reality, augmented reality, and research, resulting in a body of work that attempts to give audiences a panoramic view of the Anthropocene. The project, currently on view at the National Gallery of Canada and the Art Gallery of Ontario, takes the form of a traveling exhibit, educational program, book, and documentary film.

The three Canadian artists have teamed up before. The documentary portion of the project, Anthropocene: The Human Epoch, is the third of a film trilogy that also includes Manufactured Landscapes and Watermark. The documentary has also been announced as part of the 2019 Sundance Film Festival.

For their latest endeavor, the trio spent four years traveling to 20 countries across the globe, shooting at potash mines in the Ural Mountains of Russia; lithium ponds in the Atacama Desert; Australia’s Great Barrier Reef; the German open-pit coal mine that houses Bagger 288, one of the world’s largest machines; and many more of earth’s human-altered landscapes and seascapes. Seeking to describe humanity’s relationship with the environment rather than prescribe one, the team took an expansive approach to collecting material, shooting some 400 hours of footage to produce their 90-minute film. Their photography ratios tend to be even higher—Burtynsky sorted through an astonishing 26,000 photos to select just 110 for his previous book, Water. (He didn’t keep an exact tally for The Anthropocene Project, but you get the idea.)

“Lithium Mines #1”. Salt Flats, Atacama Desert, Chile, 2017

© Edward Burtynsky, courtesy Howard Greenberg and Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York / Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto

The scenes Burtynsky captures with his camera reflect a strange and surprising beauty in the world we’ve created. Potash mines appear as vibrant, psychedelic corridors; lithium mines in the Atacama Desert look like DJ boards for giants; a massive highway through California’s Imperial Valley strikes a satisfying note of symmetry.

“Uralkali Potash Mine #4”. Berezniki, Russia, 2017

© Edward Burtynsky, courtesy Howard Greenberg and Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York / Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto

The tension in these images between despoilment and allure makes it hard to look away. Still, the artists are quick to acknowledge that engaging with their subject matter is not always easy. Burtynsky reminds us that these are our industrial landscapes, designed to produce materials that we use every day. “We’ve created them, but we turn our backs to them,” he says.

Yet taking a long, hard look in the mirror doesn’t have to lead to despair. Even after everything Baichwal has seen in her travels to some of the most polluted sites in the world, she describes herself as an optimist. “In every one of these places that we were, there were these little hints of hope,” she says. “We had the ingenuity to do all of this; we can also use that to change . . . We just have to summon the collective will, and the will of our governments, and the will of our corporations, and the will of individuals.”

“Building Ivory Tusk Mound”. April 25, Nairobi, Kenya, 2016

© Edward Burtynsky, courtesy Howard Greenberg and Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, New York / Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto

That’s a tall order. But if we’re going to address our anthropogenic footprint, it seems only fitting to start by exploring it through the lens of that uniquely human endeavor: art.

The Anthropocene Project is on display at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto through January 6, 2019, and at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa through February 24, 2019. Having had its world premiere in September at the Toronto International Film Festival, Anthropocene: The Human Epoch is now playing in select Canadian theaters. It will make its international premiere at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. 


onEarth provides reporting and analysis about environmental science, policy, and culture. All opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the policies or positions of NRDC. Learn more or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Source:  NRDC – on Earth

By:  November 28, 2018

LINK:  https://www.nrdc.org/onearth/anthropocene-coming-soon-theater-and-museum-and-bookshelf-near-yo

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

at Denison University Monday, 12/3/2018

Biodiversity in the Anthropocene: How humans measure and respond to change
Speakers:
by Sarah Supp
(Data Analytics), Denison University

Time: 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: Shepardson College Room
(Slayter Hall Room 400)

December 2018
3
Download Event Poster
Abstract
We exist as members of the Anthropocene – an era where human activity is the dominant influence on climate and the environment. Humans activities reshape the world around us, including fundamental changes to the living world that we depend upon. Biodiversity, commonly defined as the number and different types of species in an area, serves many vital functions to human wellbeing – provisioning resources, regulating environmental stability, and cultural significance – which could be threatened under biodiversity change. Recent advances in computing and data availability have made it possible to assess biodiversity change across the planet, and to identify critical hotspots that require attention. In addition, international efforts such as the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (launched by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in 2001) and the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (launched in 2012 and administered by United Nations Environmental Programme) have increased efforts to synthesize research and create policies to address change, particularly with respect to human wellbeing and sustainable development. This talk will highlight recent scientific research on the current biodiversity crisis, through the lens of how it can impact policy and human wellbeing around the world.
About the Speaker
Sarah Supp is an ecologist who uses data analytics techniques to study biodiversity in a changing world. At Denison’s Data Analytics Program, Supp’s goal is to work together with students to foster creative and critical thought through hands-on learning and research, to become effective communicators and problem-solvers. Her research interests mainly focus on biodiversity, avian migration, and long-term trends in ecological communities.
Co-sponsored by the Department of Anthropology & Sociology, the Global Commerce program, the International Studies program, and the Department of Economics.
Like us on Facebook
Visit our website
Fall 2018 Schedule
Global Studies Seminar is an interdisciplinary forum for the Denison community to discuss & debate academic policy as well as issues of global importance.

Interested in co-sponsoring a Global Studies Seminar session? Let us know by filling the form below. No financial contribution is required!

Event Sponsorship Request

All seminars are free and open to the public.
For more information, please contact Dr. Zarrina Juraqulova at juraqulovaz@denison.edu;
740-587-6743.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list

Share
Tweet
Forward

 

 

Speakers:
by Sarah Supp
(Data Analytics), Denison University

Time: 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: Shepardson College Room
(Slayter Hall Room 400)

December 2018
3
Download Event Poster

 

Abstract
We exist as members of the Anthropocene – an era where human activity is the dominant influence on climate and the environment. Humans activities reshape the world around us, including fundamental changes to the living world that we depend upon. Biodiversity, commonly defined as the number and different types of species in an area, serves many vital functions to human wellbeing – provisioning resources, regulating environmental stability, and cultural significance – which could be threatened under biodiversity change. Recent advances in computing and data availability have made it possible to assess biodiversity change across the planet, and to identify critical hotspots that require attention. In addition, international efforts such as the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (launched by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in 2001) and the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (launched in 2012 and administered by United Nations Environmental Programme) have increased efforts to synthesize research and create policies to address change, particularly with respect to human wellbeing and sustainable development. This talk will highlight recent scientific research on the current biodiversity crisis, through the lens of how it can impact policy and human wellbeing around the world.

 

About the Speaker
Sarah Supp is an ecologist who uses data analytics techniques to study biodiversity in a changing world. At Denison’s Data Analytics Program, Supp’s goal is to work together with students to foster creative and critical thought through hands-on learning and research, to become effective communicators and problem-solvers. Her research interests mainly focus on biodiversity, avian migration, and long-term trends in ecological communities.

 

Co-sponsored by the Department of Anthropology & Sociology, the Global Commerce program, the International Studies program, and the Department of Economics.

 

Like us on Facebook
Visit our website

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *