Nick Brandt

This Empty World

Nick Brandt | Photographed by Knut Koivisto

The themes in Nick Brandt’s photographic series always relate to the destructive impact that humankind is having on
both the natural world and now humans themselves too. 

Photographing in color for the first time, This Empty World (2019) addresses the escalating destruction of the East African natural world at the hands of humans, showing a world where there is no longer space for animals to survive. The people in the photos are also often helplessly swept along by the relentless tide of ‘progress’. 

Each image is a combination of two moments in time shot from the exact same camera position, once with wild animals that enter frame, after which a set is built and a cast of people drawn from local communities. 

The Day May Break

The Day May Break (2021) is the first part of a global series portraying people & animals impacted by environmental destruction. Photographed in Zimbabwe and Kenya, the people in the photos have all been badly affected by climate change – displaced by cyclones that destroyed their homes, displaced & impoverished after years-long severe droughts.

The photos were taken at 5 sanctuaries/ conservancies. The animals are almost all long-term rescues, due to everything from poaching of their parents to habitat destruction & poisoning.

These animals can never be released back into the wild. Now habituated, it was therefore safe for strangers to be photographed close to the animals in the same frame.

However, in spite of their loss, these people and animals are the survivors. And therein lies possibility and hope.

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