Over-indulging with Ted and Gregory Colbert

December 17, 2006

“In exploring the shared language and poetic sensibilities of all animals, I am working towards rediscovering the common ground that once existed when people lived in harmony with animals. The images depict a world that is without beginning or end, here or there, past or present.”

Gregory Colbert, Creator of Ashes and Snow

Christmas is a season of over indulgence and to mark the occasion, I’ve been over-indulging in the feast of video podcasts from the TED Conference – a once a year gathering of some of the brightest and creative people on the planet. The podacasts are an extraordinary collection of ideas, sensibilities, creativity and down right good viewing. But one of the most amazing is that of artist Gregory Colbert whose Ashes and Snow Project

is an ongoing project that weaves together photographic works, 35mm films, art installations and a novel in letters. With profound patience and an unswerving commitment to the expressive and artistic nature of animals, he has captured extraordinary interactions between humans and animals. His 21st-century bestiary includes more than 40 totemic species from around the world. Since he began creating his singular work of Ashes and Snow, Colbert has mounted more than 30 expeditions to locations such as India, Egypt, Burma, Tonga, Sri Lanka, Namibia, Kenya, Antarctica, the Azores and Borneo.

I wasn’t aware of his work prior to coming across him at TED and the images in this film are some of the most beautiful I’ve ever encountered. So if over-indulgence at this time of the year can yield this kind of quality then I’m all for the festive season. See what you think (and while you’re at it, check out the TED blog for more goodies.