Sunday, March 18, 2012

Manufactured Landscapes

            I had viewed “Manufactured Landscapes” twice before this class and each time I tend to find something new and interesting about the video. The video in whole was interesting the first time I viewed it because I had never really thought about the landscapes of other countries. I was also viewing this in my color photo class and the theme of yellow in the cover picture was very striking.
Edward Burtynsky was looking for the manufactured theme in all of his images and he called these landscapes. I never thought of buildings as being a landscape but he is entirely right, building's and manufactured factories are the landscapes of today’s society because we keep building up and creating new things. The landscapes that I think of when hearing the word “landscape” is one of trees and rolling hills. We have taken these once naturally beautiful landscapes and built them up with housing and factories.
            This documentary doesn’t only focus on different landscapes but also the living conditions of the people surrounding these manufactured landscapes. They show striking images of families going through disregarded scrapes looking for metals that they can melt down to use again and even images of young children starting to work early to help with their family. These landscapes don’t just affect the ones who built it but the people all around too. These people live in horrible conditions and this documentary shows the owners of the factories in horrible light.
            All in all, this documentary was meant to make you curious about things and to think about the manufactured landscapes in our own country. This was all put together with a purpose. When you see both sides of manufactured landscapes you are to feel something for either side. You were also supposed to feel something when you viewed the images Edward Burtynsky created. I found the beauty in an ugly situation when I saw his images. They were strong images and if viewed alone without the explanation of the documentary, they would just be pretty pictures but now they are striking images. 

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