Photographs that reveal a not-seen nature

Finalist 2017, Young Photographers of the Year, 11-14 years 'Bear hug'. Ashleigh Scully.

 

 

 

This contest called since 1964 by the Natural History Museum of London is overpasses each year the number of participants and the quality of their photographs. In the 53rd edition, more than 50,000 professional and amateur photographers from a total of 92 countries have competed. Of all the works presented to competition, a selection of the best is made to take part of an exhibition open to the public. This year, Madrid is the first city where this itinerant exhibition lands.

 

 

 

 

Finalist 2017, Birds 'Resplendent delivery'. Tyohar Kastiel.

 

 

 

Nature does not stop surprising us. Although modern man got used to living in the asphalt world, surrounded by buildings, concrete, bricks and glass, our essence tells us that all this is artificial and that we belong to another environment.

 

 

 

 

Finalist 2017, Animals' portraits 'The power of the matriarch'. David Lloyd.

 

 

 

The natural environment conveys peace, marvels us, welcomes us. From nature we get everything, we live from it, with it, by it. We should not let spread the wrong feeling that we handle everything, that we are the dominant species that has everything under its control and that the elements will submit under our superiority.

 

 

 

Winner photograph of Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2017. Brent Stirton.

 

 

 

 

One would expect to find breathtaking images of unique landscapes, vertiginous cliffs against a backlight, wild animals while hunting or birds rising between the thick vegetation. Obviously, that is also. But among the finalists of this year, stand out the crudest images of the consequences of man's behaviour on the environment.

 

 

 

Finalist 2017, Individual image 'Sewage surfer'. Justin Hofman.

 

 

 

Animals on the verge of extinction harassed by a predatory and ambitious human being, seas plagued with plastics and waste that we irresponsibly do not reach to manage. This is the stark reality of our impact on nature. On this occasion, the finalist image of the contest removes the sale and deepens into the need for us to become aware of our actions. Nature is beautiful, but we must take care of it.

 

The CEART opens this Thursday, November 14th in the room A an exhibition dedicated to this master of photography, which will be open to the public until February 9th. The show includes one of the artist's latest projects, focused on the hard work carried out by the miners of Serra Pelada, an open gold mine in the heart of Brazil where employees daily risked their lives.

Immigration, poverty, marginal life, slave labour, man's relationship with the land, the use of natural resources... are issues that have always fascinated Salgado. From the beginning of his career as a photographer, his work has opted to give visibility to the most disadvantaged groups and to create with his images a vivid and impressive visual story without fakes. With a raw black and white, this author's work transits between photo-reportage and naturalistic photography.

And the idea that permeates all his work is human dignity. Salgado portrays employees, miners and gatherers from a purely humanistic approach that wants to value their integrity, their strength and their resilience.

“If you photograph a human, so that he is not represented in a noble way, there is no reason to take the picture. That is my way of seeing things.”

Salgado entered this discipline long after completing his studies in economics between Brazil and the United States, and a doctorate in statistics in France. But in 1973 his life took a turn, and he decided to start his career as a photographer. He achieved to work at the Gamma Agency and Magnum Photos for more than 15 years until in 1994 he founded his own agency “Amazonas Imagen”.

With the “Gold” project, the photographer portrays a harsh reality that takes place in the Serra Pelada mine, a name given to a totally devastated and anarchically excavated mining enclave, the world's largest open-pit gold mine, through which more than 50,000 people have passed. In the heat of the legends about the mysterious “El Dorado”, the enthusiasm for this precious metal led to the development of strenuous exploitation practices for the workers and to originate tales of grief and glory, of human victory and defeat between the soil, the tunnels and the cargo baskets.

The CEART exhibition brings together Salgado's full portfolio in his characteristical black and white and large-format photographs that leave no one indifferent.