Edward Burtynsky is regarded as one of the world’s most accomplished contemporary photographers. The predominant theme in his work is nature transformed through industry and he has documented some of the most poignant examples of this around the world. Often using an aerial vantage point, his large-scale photographs are rich in detail and vast in scale, sometimes verging on the appearance of painterly abstractions. Burtynsky works on each project for several years before it is released. Major projects include Quarries, Oil, Water, Anthropocene and African Studies.


Edward Burtynsky was born in St. Catharines, Ontario in 1955 and is based in Toronto. His photographs are included in the collections of over sixty major museums around the world, including the National Gallery of Canada; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid; the Tate Modern, London and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California. Exhibitions include Anthropocene (2018) at the Art Gallery of Ontario and the National Gallery of Canada (international touring exhibition); Water (2013) at the New Orleans Museum of Art & Contemporary Art Center, New Orleans, (international touring exhibition) and Oil (2009) at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. (touring 2009-2014). Awards and distinctions include the TED Prize, the Governor General’s Awards in Visual and Media Arts, The Outreach award at the Rencontres d’Arles, the Roloff Beny Book award, and the Rogers Best Canadian Film Award. In 2006 Burtynsky was awarded the title of Officer of the Order of Canada and in 2008 he was awarded the ICP Infinity Award for Art. In 2020 he was awarded a Royal Photographic Society Honorary Fellowship and in 2022 was honoured with the Outstanding Contribution to Photography Award by the World Photography Organization. Most recently Burtynsky was inducted into the International Photography Hall of Fame and was named the 2022 recipient for the annual Pollution Probe Award. In February 2024, Burtynsky: Extraction/Abstraction, a major retrospective of the photographer’s career, opened at the Saatchi Gallery in London, UK.