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Nick Brandt: The Day May Break, Chapter Two
Introduction by Daniel Sherrell.
Portraits of people and animals dispossessed by climate change in South America—from the author of Inherit the Dust
Some of Nick Brandt’s subjects are humans, some are animals, but they all are creatures of equal and obvious personhood. The overwhelming sense in the photographer’s ongoing global series The Day May Break is that they are figuring out how to live in a new world. Each has arrived at the shoot at Senda Verde wildlife sanctuary in Bolivia through their own cascade of tragedy. Both extreme droughts and floods have destroyed people’s homes and livelihoods.
Victims of habitat destruction and wildlife trafficking, the animals are rescues that can never be rewilded. Their portraits were taken in the same frame and indeed convey a sense of connectedness through a shared fate. Fog comes wafting through the frame: it is the unifying visual, symbolic of the natural world rapidly fading from view, an echo of the smoke from wildfires, intensified by climate change, devastating so much of the planet. But despite their loss, these people and animals are survivors, pioneers entering a new phase our world has reached. In The Day May Break, Chapter Two they share their powerful stories.
Nick Brandt (born 1964) studied film and painting at St Martin’s College in London. He turned to photography in 2001 with his trilogy On This Earth, A Shadow Falls and Across the Ravaged Land. His more recent books are Inherit the Dust (2016), This Empty World (2019) and The Day May Break (2021). He lives in Southern California.
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