Anthropocene (published by Goose Lane Editions and the AGO with the National Gallery of Canada and MAST in 2018) is the winner of Outstanding Achievement in Research in the art category by the Canadian Museums Association. The award, presented in Toronto on April 17th at the CMA’s 2019 National Conference, was the latest honour for the book, film and gallery project, which was deemed by judges as “nationally significant and exceeded the current standard of practice by going beyond the conventional approach.”
In Anthropocene, Edward Burtynsky, Jennifer Baichwal, and Nicholas de Pencier, chronicles the massive and irreversible impact of humans on the Earth — on a geological scale.
In photographs that are both stunning and disconcerting, Burtynsky, Baichwal, and de Pencier document species extinction (the burning of elephant tusks to disrupt the illegal trade of ivory), technofossils (swathes of discarded plastic forming geological layers), and terraforming (mines and industrial agriculture).
The book also features a range of essays by artists, curators, and scientists, some part of an international group of scientists who have proposed that the Earth is now entering a new era of geological time where human activity is the driving force behind environmental and geological change — i.e. the Anthropocene.
Each year, a volunteer jury conducts a peer review of all submissions and successful recipients are chosen. The Canadian Museum Awards recognize professionals, projects, and cultural institutions who are leaders and innovators.
The Canadian Museums Association is the national organization for the advancement of Canada’s museum sector. The CMA was established by a small group of people in 1947 and now has nearly 2,000 members.