Think you knew the world? Lensculture's latest find (via the Circulation(s) festival in Paris) is Elena Chernyshova, who created a documentary, equal parts magical and sinister, about Norilsk. I, for one, had never heard of Norilsk. It's a Siberian mining city that is the world's northernmost city (of 100,000 population or more) and the seventh most polluted.
Do you happen to recall from your photo history class that platinum/palladium printing paper was suddenly in short supply after the outbreak of WWI? It caused Frederick Evans to give up photography. Trade with Russia had been disrupted and he could no longer get his preferred papers. (You could buy commercially prepared platinum printing paper back then. Never since, except very briefly when Rob Steinberg tried to revive it.) Well, Norilsk was where the platinum and palladium came from.
Note that sometimes, "Random Excellence" here on TOP is a recommendation of a single picture. Not this time—try to find some time today to look at the photographer's whole set on Lensculture. It's titled "Days of Night—Nights of Day." A wondrous documentary project, with a strange tension between beauty and horror.
Elena was born in Moscow and is now based in France.
And in the TOP file, regular reader Will von Dauster had two photographs published to illustrate a recent National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) article about the latest Annual Greenhouse Gas Index (AGGI). Will used a Sony A7 and Zeiss 24–70mm and an A6000 with the Zeiss 24mm. Here's the article, and the whole shoot, which took place at the David Skaggs Research Center in Boulder, Colorado.
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Featured Comments from:
Lesley: "Elena's work is stunning, but the real find for me was LensCulture, a site I hadn't seen before. There's only one problem with the site—I know that I will spend perhaps too much time mining its depths. Thank you."