Chris Jordan is an artist who makes art to facilitate change. His images are powerful and reflect ideas of mass consumption. His directive towards humankind is simple and straightforward: It is time to worry about the smaller things too. Our consumption of electronics, food and clother might not be magnanimous but when it adds up, it becomes a massive chain of carbon footprints and wasre which humankind fails to handle. He thinks of all the 8 billion people and the manifold of the waste thus. In a body of work entitled “Intolerable Beauty: Portraits of American Mass Consumption,” Jordan visited landfills and recycling centers to photograph vast piles of discarded products such as cell phones, chargers, circuit boards, crushed cars, glass bottles and other consumer goods.

In the words of the artist: “Exploring around our country’s shipping ports and industrial yards, where the accumulated detritus of our consumption is exposed to view like eroded layers in the Grand Canyon, I find evidence of a slow-motion apocalypse in progress. I am appalled by these scenes, and yet also drawn into them with awe and fascination. The immense scale of our consumption can appear desolate, macabre, oddly comical and ironic, and even darkly beautiful; for me its consistent feature is a staggering complexity.”
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Image 1: Circuit boards, Atlanta, 2004
Chris Jordan, 2004, archival inkjet print, 44″ x 64″, ©️ 2005, courtesy of the artist
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Image 2: Circuit boards 2, New Orleans, 2005
Chris Jordan, 2005, archival inkjet print, 44″ x 57″, ©️ 2005, courtesy of the artist
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Image 3: Cell phone chargers, Atlanta, 2004
Chris Jordan, 2004, archival inkjet print, 44″ x 66″, ©️ 2004, courtesy of the artist

 

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