Burtynsky exhibition at Saatchi Gallery ‘pulls curtain away’ on humanity’s impact on Earth
In this edition of CULT, Euronews reporter Damon Embling looks around a new exhibition at London’s Saatchi Gallery, which delves into the impact of humans on our planet. Burtynsky: Extraction/Abstraction is a retrospective of the photographer’s work, featuring more than 90 large-format photos from Canadian photographic artist Edward Burtynsky, along with murals and an augmented reality experience. The images on show document humanity’s footprint in the natural world and the environmental consequences of industry over more than four decades. It is divided into five main sections: Abstraction, Agriculture, Extraction, Manufacturing & Industry and Waste. Burtynsky says it’s not a show about “indictment,” but one that’s “pulling the curtain away” on the “other world that has to be there, for this world to exist.” One exhibit, In the Wake of Progress, combines photos and video footage from Burtynsky’s long career. The 22-minute experience immerses visitors in the story of human industry’s impact on the Earth, urging a rethink and the pursuit of a more sustainable tomorrow. Other works on show explore how marks left by industry can be strangely beautiful, including one image from Canada, which features orange liquid waste from nickel mining. Burtynsky: Extraction/ Abstraction is at Saatchi Gallery, London SW3, from February 14 to May 6. Edward Burtynsky — New Works is at Flowers Gallery, London W1, from February 28 to Apr 6.