Watched at HKU, hosted by the Hong Kong Documentary Initiative. April 2017.
I had never watched Watermark the film, although I have been through the book numerous times, and have stood in front the photos in Ed Burtynsky’s Watermark exhibition for hours on end. It is incredibly humbling to think that I know this great artist who produces these fucking fantastic photos. Just mind boggling.
The film is reflective, and jarring, inspiring, and tragic. Just the opening – water gushing across the frame, lots and lots of it, the sound of water hitting water, and then silence as the camera looks directly at cracked earth, scorched dry – hits hard as you contemplate how water is the source of life and without it, we’re just doomed.
It’s a film that is more beautiful the larger the screen you watch it on, and carries such weight as you watch stories about the loss of water, the building of dams, the sacredness of cleansing, and of course, pollution caused by human activities… Burtynsky produces incredible beauty from devastation and death. It’s just fantastic.