Marja-Leena Rathje
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Burtynsky interview

"People who are engaged in art are engaged in a process of thinking beyond the present moment, looking both forward and backward, reflecting on how the human story plays itself out. In a way, art is a research and development department. It shows us new places we can go in terms of thought; it makes us reflect upon our actions, our ethics; it questions our definitions of good and evil."

"I believe that culture is key to a healthy society. So many people are caught so entirely in the process of working and making a living that society needs somebody to put a mirror up, to open up our consciousness to the things that are out of sight, out of mind."

Read this excellent interview of Edward Burtynsky in Framing Global Capitalism, by Christopher Grabowski for The Tyee. You will enjoy the photo gallery.

Long time readers may recall that I've written about this acclaimed Canadian artist and photographer several times, most recently when he had an exhibition in Vancouver.

Marja-Leena | 19/01/2007 | 5 comments
themes: Other artists, Photography


A great upbeat, encouraging quote. I'll get back to that interview and photos, but now my curiosity's piqued by 'a mouse in france' on your links list!

Thanks for dropping by, Lucy. I think you'll enjoy 'mouse in france' as she may be a neighbour of yours, as well as another UK transplant!!

We saw the Burtynsky film recently - saw his big exhibition a while ago at the contemporary museum here. I found the film very disturbing and somewhat unsatisfying - he is clearly very political but in the film was refusing to express his views, saying the work should allow the viewer to draw his/her own conclusions. Basically I agree but I think he might as well go ahead and say what he thinks - and I look forward to reading this interview for that reason. The Chinese parts of the film were very haunting, I thought, and I can't look at a "Made in China" label without thinking of them.

You're right - that's a great interview, and it addresses the subjects I just mentioned. Interesting that it begins with Pinter. Thanks for the link!

Beth, I didn't make it over to see the film though I've read mixed reviews about it. I certainly found some of the images in the exhibition of the huge factories with their workers doing repetitive piece work quite disturbing, yet isn't that the way our factories used to be a hundred years ago? Now we've farmed all this work from the west to them because they are willling to work for less money. One day that will change and who will be left to work at slave wages, I wonder? I'm glad you enjoyed the interview, and thanks for your comments!