Magazine article Queen's Quarterly

Edward Burtynsky World of Industry

Magazine article Queen's Quarterly

Edward Burtynsky World of Industry

Article excerpt

Edward Burtynsky is best known for his large-scale, richly detailed colour photographs of landscapes that have been significantly transformed by human industry. The impulses of documentary photography are fused with romantic elements in Burtynsky's art. His depictions of the relationship between human industry and nature often reveal an unexpected beauty inherent in altered landscapes.

Over the past 25 years, Burtynsky has explored unfamiliar industrial sites around the globe. His subjects include mines, quarries, oil refineries, tailings, and manufacturing and recycling plants. Contentious issues--such as the environmental effects of industrial development, the extraction and reuse of raw materials, and global patterns of transformation--underpin his photographic series. Burtynsky's most recent work investigates the mass mobilization of labour in China as that country embraces capitalism.

In 2006 Edward Burtynsky donated 47 works to the Agnes Etherington Art Centre at Queen's University. These images span twenty years of his career, from 1985 to 2005, and include examples from his major series, notably: Mines (1983-1985); Quarries (1991-2003); Tailings (1995-1996); Urban Mines (1997 and 2001); Oil Refineries (1999 and 2001); Shipbreaking (2000-2001); Oil Fields (2001-2002); Three Gorges Dam Project (2002 and 2005); China (2004-2005) and an additional group of works relating to transportation.

Shipyard #16, Qili Port, Zhejiang Province, China, 2005

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Manufacturing #7, Textile Mill, Xiaoxing, Zhejiang Province, China, 2004

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Manufacturing #8, Textile Mill, Xiaoxing, Zhejiang, China, 2004

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Manufacturing #11, Youngor Textiles, Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, China, 2005

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Urban Renewal #6, Apartment Complex, JiangjunAo, Hong Kong, China, 2004

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

China Recycling #2, Cutter, Fengjiang, Zhejiang Province, China, 2004

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

China Recycling #15, Cankun Aluminum, Xiamen City, Fujian Province, China, 2005

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Shipyard #7, Oili Port, Zhejiang Province, China, 2005

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Shipbreaking #14, Chittagong, Bangladesh, 2000

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Dam #3, Three Gorges Dam Project, Yangtze River, China, 2002

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Wan Zhou #4, Three Gorges Dam Project, Yangtze River, China, 2002

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

EDWARD BURTYNSKY's achievements have been recognized through numerous awards including the TED Prize (2004), the Roloff Beny Book Award (2004), and the Order of Canada (2006). …

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