Do not miss the chance to see Edward Burtynsky's "Oil" exhibit of mammoth-sized photos at the Corcoran Gallery in downtown Washington.

One photo from the exhibit is the "Gallery" feature in this month's issue of the Atlantic. It shows the now-derelict SOCAR oil fields in Baku, Azerbaijan.

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Here's another, of the oil-sands operation in Canada:

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The impact of the exhibit as a whole is, well, hard to convey in words. I had originally been drawn to Burtynsky's photos because his portrayal of factories in China resembled what I had seen there -- eg, in the one below, perhaps the most famous picture from his China series:

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The series on Oil was more enlightening to me -- perhaps because I'd already seen these Chinese factories, but mainly because very few people have seen the range of oil-industry artifacts that he has captured in his wall-sized and incredibly-detailed photos. Extraction and refinery operations around the world; the industries oil has made possible; the indications of the end of the oil era. Hard to forget. (In DC until December 13.) Thanks to TMF and EBF for the prod to actually drive downtown and see this.

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