What the Camera Cannot See
Each month, we show you a short film that’s moved us beyond the day – meaningful stories that inspire us to pause, think and feel.
Artist Richard Mosse documents humanitarian crises and environmental catastrophes by making the unseen visible. This film follows Mosse and his collaborators Ben Frost and Trevor Tweeten as they travel across the world to film under-reported world events in zones of conflict, repurposing surveillance technologies and scientific tools to capture stories and scenes that evoke deeper understanding and motivate audiences to act.
“My power, if I have any,” says Mosse, “is to be able to show you the things that I’ve seen in a more powerful way than perhaps the pictures you’ve seen in the newspaper of the same thing.”
Richard Mosse’s work calls specific attention to the tools we use to capture and distribute information about global events. The artist uses multispectral imaging, cameras that capture ultraviolet light, and tropes of Western media to show audiences the various scales and impacts of deforestation in the Amazon as well as their own implication in it. “We can’t see the climate changing, and that’s really the inherent problem,” says Mosse. “It’s on a scale beyond what we can perceive.”
This film is from the Art21 digital series “Extended Play”. Art21 is the world’s leading source to learn directly from the artists of our time. A nonprofit organisation, their mission is to educate and expand access to contemporary art, producing documentary films, resources and public programs.
“We can’t see the climate changing, and that’s really the inherent problem. It’s on a scale beyond what we can perceive.”Richard Mosse
“Extended Play” Series Producer: Ian Forster. Director: Ian Forster. Editor: Riley Hooper. Camera: Sean Hanley, Andrew Kemp, Sebastián Lasaosa Rogers. Assistant Camera: Oscar Harrison. Sound: Fivel Rothberg. Colorist: Russell Yaffe. Sound Mix: Collin Blendell. Assistant Editor: Michelle Hanks. Music: Blue Dot Sessions, Joel Pickard. Artwork Courtesy: Richard Mosse, Jack Shainman Gallery, Carlier | Gebauer, Altman Siegel Gallery. Artwork Collaborators: Ben Frost, Sound; Trevor Tweeten, Cinematography & Editing; Jerome Thelia, Colorist; Matthew Warren, Studio Manager; Metropolis Film Labs, Film Scanning; Spectral Devices, Multispectral Camera Engineer. Amazon Behind the Scenes Video: Richard Mosse, Edimar Tozzo, Gabriel Uchida. Special Thanks: 180 Studios, Irish Pavilion of the 55th Venice Biennale, National Gallery of Victoria.
Production still from the “Extended Play” film “Richard Mosse: What the Camera Cannot See.” © Art21, Inc. 2022.