Tuesday, February 17, 2009

An Uneasy Beauty Worth the Uneasiness of Surrey

On Sunday three of my friends and I ventured into shell shocked Surrey to check out "An Uneasy Beauty", the collection of Edward Burtynsky's photographs of Western Canada now on display at the Surrey Art Gallery until March 22nd. Admission is by donation (recommended minimum is $2), but we each put in $5 and the exhibit is well worth it even though the gallery itself is quite small.

The large format photos reveal the vast scale and beauty of wilderness desecrated by industrial progress. Aerial shots of Fort Mac Murray, Alberta portray a land razed by humans, the pattern of pipes, roads, and mining equipment terrifyingly beautiful; a reminder of the cost of making money at the expense of the environment. It will be interesting to see the change in Alberta's lucrative oil industry after Obama meets with Harper and puts pressure on the Federal Government to cut back on the use of non-renewable resources and perhaps change the political landscape for the better.

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