A Global Image 3

The third image I have selected will be focused on the global environmental impacts that our society is imposing on the planet earth. At the moment there is over 280mln tonnes of plastic waste circulating in our oceans, the phenomenon that received the name ‘the Five Gyres’. Consumption that happens in the USA, UK, Europe, but increasingly China, Indonesia, India is causing great damage to the health of the marine ecosystems, from plankton to shrimp, small fishes, large fishes, mammals and ultimately us humans. Nature has a profound amount of connectivity and the tendency to accumulate matter at the higher levels of the trophic web. This is why the large fishes studied at the London Zoo have to be disposed of as ‘toxic waste’, because they are too contaminated. Jeremy Irons has recently explored these issues in a brilliant documentary called ‘Trashed’. Highly recommended if you haven’t seen it. The image I have chosen is one of several pairs exhibited in their entirety at the photographic festival in Spain. It depicts a colourful piece of plastic rubbish found on a beach in Tenerife. Its pair, the exotic nut found in Malaysia is forming a strong contrast both in terms of subject matter and the background as the colour of the sand is also projecting the attitude of the photographer towards the objects depicted. The ‘Objects Found on the Beach’ series has been exhibited in part or in full at Brighton Photo Biennial, Brighton Photo Fringe, Art for the Earth exhibition at PHILIPS auction house, O3 Gallery, OVADA and so on.

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(c) Stanislav Shmelev (2015)

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