Edward Burtynsky has achieved global recognition for his spectacular, largescale photographs that depict the impact of human activity upon urban and natural environments around the world. Covering themes such as mines and quarries, the oil industry, ship-building and ship-breaking, water as a resource under threat world-wide, and an emergent China, Burtynsky’s photographs have been published in project-based monographs, featured in award-winning documentary films and seen widely in international touring exhibitions. For the past decade, however, there has been no comprehensive survey of his multi-faceted work.
Edited and curated by William A. Ewing, Essential Elements provides an overview of Burtynsky’s work across four decades, including both iconic images and many previously unpublished photographs. Relinquishing the project-based lens through which the photographer’s work has previously been presented, this book presents Burtynsky’s photographs in five free-flowing sections that combine and contrast work from throughout his career. This original approach provides a sense of both his visual language and his exploration of the dilemmas at the heart of our globalized world. Each section is interspersed with selected texts that work in concert with the images, to provide a fuller understanding of Burtynsky’s view of the world.
This Special Collector's Edition of this book comes with a hard back slipcase and limited edition print of Silver Lake Operations #16, Lake Lefroy, Western Australia, 2007.