Exchangemagazine.com – tuesday and thursday edition

Our planet is changing, faster than ever. This September, internationally acclaimed photographer Edward Burtynsky, and award-winning Toronto filmmakers Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier present the dramatic findings – through photographs, film and innovative augmented reality (AR) installations – of their four-year investigation into how humans have impacted the Earth.

Opening at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) on Sept. 28, Anthropocene features more than 50 extraordinary works that reveal the many ways in which humans are transforming the planet, from concrete seawalls off the coast of China, to potash mines in Russia, marble quarries in Italy, landfills in Nairobi, logging in British Columbia and more. Anthropocene is curated by Sophie Hackett, the AGO’s Curator of Photography.


“The artists’ collaborative use of multimedia – including photographs, film and augmented reality – speaks to the complexity of the issue the exhibition explores: how humans are changing the planet. No single media can convey that vital and pressing theme with as much power,” says Sophie Hackett, the AGO’s Curator of Photography. “No matter the media used or how far the location – be it Kenya, Chile or British Columbia, what unites the work is that what happens across the globe affects us all.”

Organized in partnership with the Canadian Photography Institute of the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa, and co-produced with Fondazione MAST, Bologna, Italy, Anthropocene marks the first time that the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto and the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa will present simultaneous, complementary exhibitions. This reflects the urgent, global nature of this conversation, a conversation being led by Canadian artists.

At the AGO, Anthropocene will fill the Sam & Ayala Zacks Pavilion, where all internal walls will be removed, for visitors to encounter 40 new and recent large scale photographs by Burtynsky, suspended in an open-concept environment. In addition to this forest of images, the exhibition will include seven short films by Baichwal and de Pencier, several of which provide aerial views that reveal the scale of human impact on different locations. Anchoring each space are massive, highly detailed mural-sized photographs by Burtynsky. Embedded in the murals is film footage, that when triggered, brings viewers a deeper understanding of the activity within, and context around, each scene.

A highlight of the exhibition are innovative AR experiences. Composed of thousands of still images and assembled through a process called photogrammetry, each AR installation, when triggered, brings the visitor close to a near-to-life-size 3D image. These cutting-edge AR installations are accessible via an app that will be free for visitors to download on their tablets and smartphones. Look for more details closer to the exhibition launch.

Timed-entry tickets for Anthropocene go on sale to the public on Sept. 14, 2018. They are $16.50 for post-secondary students and youth ages 17 and under, $21.50 for seniors and $25 for adults. Tickets will be available online at AGO.ca, in person and by phone. Admission is free for AGO Members and for children five and under. Exclusive Members’ previews are Sept. 25-27, 2018. More information about the benefits of AGO Membership can be found at AGO.ca/membership.

The AGO once again opens its doors from dusk till dawn for free on Sept. 29, 2018 for Nuit Blanche in Toronto. In honour of Anthropocene, visitors are invited to experience a unique immersive environment in Walker Court that encourages visitors to consider profound and lasting human impacts to the Earth. A specially created video installation by Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier and Edward Burtynsky will enable visitors to experience both old-growth forest and deforestation on Vancouver Island. For more details visit www.ago.ca.