Photographer Nick Brandt’s most recent works — “This Empty World” and “Inherit the Dust” — remind us of the grandeur and fragility of the disappearing natural world. The series calls attention to the degradation of East African landscapes as runaway development threatens both the animals and people who live there. The cinematic and emotional images are an important and timely call to conservation.
Brandt hopes this work raises awareness of the ongoing destruction of ecosystems and inspires viewers to act. He believes it is still possible to mitigate the worst of what humankind is doing. With that in mind, in 2010, Brandt co-founded the non-profit organization, Big Life Foundation, which operates in Kenya and Tanzania, where “This Empty World” was photographed. Today, the organization employs almost 500 local people, including 300+ rangers who protect 1.6 million acres of wildland. Their presence has dramatically reduced the killing of elephants and all other animals in the ecosystem.