Journalism as Art

Language and Land: Tierra e Idioma

These artworks are based on Anjan Sundaram's recent reporting on climate justice on the environmental frontlines of Mexico, the subject of his TED2024 talk. The works distill the courage, trauma, and inspiration of environmental defense communities in remote, vulnerable, conflict-ridden territories, and represent them visually. The scenes are laden with tension and perception as Anjan conducts his reporting; they are both psychological signposts and scars; the white spaces represent the isolation of the communities and alienation of the artist. The art incorporates elements from Anjan's journalism, such as storytelling, while drawing on the objects of his journalistic process and production, along with his intimate possessions, to create a sense of proximity to the scenes he depicts by placing abstract forms of his body in the artwork.

Series I: Fighter and Drones
Series II: Animals and Minerals
Series III: Disappeared Men on the Horizon

This series depicts a conflict zone Anjan traveled to, where a Mexican community fought a drone war to protect a forested mountain full of gold. The community values the forests and jaguars, which a powerful European mining company wants to destroy to access the mountain's gold. These artworks incorporate the clothes that Anjan wore into the conflict zones to represent how the defenders inspired him to place his own body in the conflict zones. Anjan investigated two Mexican activists who disappeared after opposing the mining company. The community agreed to take him to the frontline. Endangered turtles nest on these coasts alongside the drone war. Endangered butterflies overwinter in nearby forests. This mountain chain has been mined since Hernan Cortes conquered the Aztecs in 1521; Emperor Moctezuma II likely pointed Cortes to his empire's sources of gold.

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prints on handwoven khadi cloth


90cm x 60 cm