Saturday, September 22, 2007

A Picture's Worth a Thousand Words

Last night I saw an amazingly powerful video about environmental degredation, consumerism, and the power of art. It was a segment on "Bill Moyers Journal" - the overall piece was about Rachael Carson and the anniversary of "Silent Spring." But the final portion focused on the work of photographic artist Chris Jordan. Extremely powerful images, at first beautiful, then disturbing. I highly recommend watching it. Here's the link to that 8 minute segment:

(It takes a minute or two to load, so don't worry that there's a blank space on the screen for a wee bit. Worth the wait!)

Here are a few examples of Jordan's photos.
I've included human scale models to show the size of the work:

This is the number of flights passing over Seattle in one 8 hour period, with a corresponding closeup:

This is the number of plastic bottles used in the US in a 5 minute period:

This might be the most powerful -- the number of plastic bags used in the US in a 5 second period (60,000):

And this one is infuriating -- the number of $100 dollar bills spent by the US in a one hour period on the war in Iraq ($12.5 million):

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