Nadav Kander: Yangtze, The Long River

I’ve been reading Constructing Worlds: Photography and Architecture in the Modern Age, the book published on the occasion of the exhibition of the same name held at the Barbican Centre in 2014. I could not go to the exhibition as I was living in Bergamo at the time, but I sent my sister to buy a copy of the volume. I didn’t open it for nine years, but I was sure it was interesting, and now that I have, I know I was right.

One of the chapters is dedicated to the urban landscapes of Nadav Kander, especially his series shot in China (Yangtze, The Long River), which I have found very beautiful. No wonder he won the Prix Pictet for them.

The chapter’s author, Julian Stallbrass, writes the following:

Nadav Kander is right to say of his photographic series that it is not just about China but about all of us. … The danger indicated in Kander’s photographs is not distant, though it is neatly framed and held in measured compositions: it is a present and profound threat.

As more and more of the world’s population is drawn into energy-intensive living and fashion-driven disposable consumerism, biodiversity will further crash (the Anthropocene mass-extinction event has long been unfolding), basic ecological functions (photosynthesis and insect pollination) will falter, and global warming will enter an unstoppable feedback loop.

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