Killing Da Vinci

Killing Da Vinci is a photographic series about environmental justice in the Americas. I traveled in the Americas to meet with Black and Indigenous communities. They are the ones suffering the most from environmental injustice.

KILLING DA VINCI is a (ongoing) visual story about leadership in movements toward environmental justice. Environmental justice is a movement that aims to address how different groups of people are affected by policy making about environment. This acknowledges the role of power in who is accountable for climate change, water pollution, biomass destruction, and who is best suited to lead environmental justice movements. In the Americas, Black and Indigenous communities are disproportionately affected by environmental issues, which constitute environmental racism. But environmental racism is just a part of environmental justice. A lot of the crisis we are going to cover with this project target communities based on race, but also on class, religious belief, etc. This project aims to cover different kinds of environmental justice crisis.

I am traveling the world to meet with local communities and raise awareness on how environmental injustice is systematically affecting marginalized groups.

I draw on Leonardo Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man visually and conceptually to illustrate the consequences of exercising power over nature. The Vitruvian Man is a drawing made by Da Vinci that represents his calculations of the perfectly proportioned human form. I actually decided to focus on the concept of perfection to point out the dysfunctional parts of our Western societies.

The idea of perfection is, to me, what disconnect humans from themselves and societies from their environment. It somehow viciously teach us that we will never be enough. As man and women, mothers, fathers, siblings, we tend to think that our goal in life is to always be better, do better, reach for better. That thinking creates a disconnection between who we are and how we see ourselves.

As societies, the idea of perfection pushes to create every day more powerful, more accurate technology, and we tend to collectively think that better, faster and stronger is the way to go. This never-ending quest to perfect technology disconnects us from an important fact: we don’t have infinite resources to sustain such a production.

And finally, for Da Vinci, perfection is White man… I wanted to disrupt that concept and center, in my photography, members of the communities I am meeting in my travels.

Altogether, each photo depicts the surreal irony of humanity’s quest to set itself apart while tearing itself apart.

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