Art on Film | WASTE LAND
Join us for an evening at the MFA featuring our popular Art on Film series. We will have special evening hours at the museum and a screening of the award-winning documentary WASTE LAND on Thursday, November 2. Presented by Arthouse Films, WASTE LAND, an Almega Projects, and O2 Filmes Production, is a 98-minute uplifting feature documentary highlighting the transformative power of art and the beauty of the human spirit. Directed by Lucy Walker and Co-directed by João Jardim and Karen Harley, WASTE LAND is set on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro at Jardim Gramacho, the world’s largest landfill, where men and women sift through garbage for a living. Artist Vik Muniz produces portraits of the workers and learns about their lives. This special screening of WASTE LAND is part of a series of public programming events designed to illuminate the MFA’s forthcoming exhibition, The Nature of Art, which looks at the myriad ways humans have used art to navigate and mediate our environment.
Art on Film | WASTE LAND
Thursday, November 2
Special museum hours from 5:00 pm–6:30 pm
Screening of WASTE LAND from 6:30 pm–8:00 pm
Cash bar (beer, wine, and soda) and snacks available for purchase
Ticketed Event: FREE for MFA Members; $15 Not-yet Members
(includes museum admission and film screening)
Registration is required.
ABOUT THE FILM
Filmed over nearly three years, WASTE LAND follows renowned artist Vik Muniz as he journeys from his home base in Brooklyn to his native Brazil and the world’s largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. There he photographs an eclectic band of “catadores”—self-designated pickers of recyclable materials. Muniz’s initial objective was to “paint” the catadores with garbage. However, his collaboration with these inspiring characters as they recreate photographic images of themselves out of garbage reveals both the dignity and despair of the catadores as they begin to re-imagine their lives. Director Lucy Walker (known for films like DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND, BLINDSIGHT, and COUNTDOWN TO ZERO), along with co-directors João Jardim and Karen Harley, have expansive access to the entire process and, ultimately, offer stirring evidence of art’s transformative power and the magical essence of the human spirit.
Brazilian-born, Brooklyn-based illusionist and innovator Vik Muniz lives for the moment when all our fixed preconceptions fail us, and we are forced to enter a dialogue with the world we inhabit. In this moment, we are confronted with chaos otherwise hidden from view. It is precisely through his artwork (both in product and process) that Muniz harnesses the generative possibility of disorder. Like dumpster diving and freeganism, Vik Muniz’s latest project, “Pictures of Garbage,” is invested in the excavation of garbage. However, a key distinction is that his exploration moves beyond questions of utility—he isn’t simply interested in finding and salvaging the secret treasures within trash heaps (iPods, sealed fruit bowls, jewelry) but rather in using garbage as an art medium.
FINAL TIAO PHOTOGRAPHIC PRINT ENTITLED ÒMARAT/ SEBASTIAO Ð PICTURES OF GARBAGEÓ Photograph by Vik Muniz, courtesy of Vik Muniz Studio
B/W VIK MUNIZ BEHIND CAMERA Photography by Barney Kulok, courtesy of Vik Muniz Studio