The View From Above…

A Terra Vista do Céu/Earth From the Air

The 12 Rio Photos Among the 118 Others from Around the Globe

What an incredible experience to arrive to this beautiful photography exhibition every day right outside the entrance to my office in Cinelandia.  The square is packed with people from all over the world day and night…strolling and marveling…truly a sight to behold.

Yann Arthus-Bertrand started this project 20 years ago during the ECO ’92 summit in Brazil and has brought the exhibition to Rio for the first time. It has been to 110 cities and I had forgotten that I saw an earlier version 10 years ago in London.  On the base of each photograph is an eye-opening, sourced factoid, such as:

– More than 6,000 languages spoken in the world risk extinction; 96% are spoken by only 4% of the world’s population

– If each and every person on the planet lived as a North American, more than 4 planets would be necessary to provide us with our needs. On the other hand, if we all lived as an African, only 2/3 of the Earth would be used

– The number of air passengers doubled from 1992-2009

– On January 1, 1992 there were 160 United Nations member states. Today there are 193

– The production of meat is responsible for an estimated 18-25% of greenhouse gas emissions

– The number of international tourists increased 90% between 1995-2010

– The energy consumption per inhabitant in developed countries is about 12 times higher than the consumption of inhabitants in developing countries. This difference has not eveloved in 20 years

These are only 7 of the 130 amazing and startling facts which have provided my students, colleagues and me with endless discussion topics relating to cultural, local, international and language points.

I highly recommend you visit Yann’s site where you can also get thousands of free downloadable photographs of his work from around the globe. It is worth the visit.

In life imitating art, I get to “look down” at all of this from our classrooms.  I am no longer missing my dishwasher…the appliance, that is!

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