“Inherit The Dust” is Nick Brandt’s solo exhibition hosted by Custot Gallery from 8 December 2016 to 28 February 2017.
Through this show, the British photographer aims to make us reflect upon the environment that surrounds us every day: have you ever thought about what there was before the massive urbanization? Have you ever thought about who was living there before we came to inhabit this place?
Starting in 2001 with a trilogy of works photographed and published – “On This Earth”, “A Shadow Falls”, “Across the Ravaged Land” -, Nick Brandt devoted himself to protect the wildlife and ecosystems of a large area of East Africa, co-founding the non-profit organization Big Life Foundation in 2010.
East Africa, in fact, is a place where extraordinary animals still roam, but the impact of such a few amount of resources for so many humans is slowly and inexorably taking away their habitat. In Brandt’s “Inherit The Dust”, visitors can see those animals as ghosts in a wasteland of despair and destruction, searching for their former home and looking to the change that affected their life. Some of the photographs show how these animals are effectively invisible to the people that surrounds them, they are almost reduced to ghosts in these blasted landscapes, further emphasized through the artist’s use of monochrome.
For this purpose, the best weapon that an artist could have is the art itself and, in this particular case, the camera: best known for his intimate depictions of wild animals and their disappearing habitats, Nick Brandt captures, through his large-scale black and white photographs, the human impact in the territories where animals used to roam.
Enlarging unreleased animal portraits of his past projects to life-size and placing them in locations where those animals used to live – but, as result of human impact, no longer do – Nick Brandt wants to give us a wake up call: “For each of us, wherever we live on the planet, animals walked in the very place where we now sit…If we continue to do nothing, future generations will be inheriting dust”.