In this gallery, the photographer and his wife denounce the dangers posed by logging, gold panning and cattle breeding. He notably recalls the devastating effects of the fires on the Amazon rainforest in 2019.
→ READ. Claudia Andujar, photographer hired alongside the Yanomamis
In addition to these invasive and often illegal activities which already have a strong impact on the existence and survival of Indian populations, there is now the risk of contamination with coronavirus. The threat is becoming more and more pressing since the Brazilian authorities responsible for the protection of their territory have been immobilized since the start of the pandemic in Brazil and surveillance has been relaxed.
The petitioners fear particularly for isolated human groups, who, without contact with the outside world, would be very vulnerable to the virus due to the lack of sufficient immune defenses.
Plethora of stars
In addition to his undeniable talent as a photographer, Salgado has always mastered his communication and the promotion of his work. He demonstrates it once again by mobilizing an impressive list of stars of the big screen like Meryl Streep or Juliette Binoche, directors like Guillermo del Toro and Pedro Almodovar, or musicians and singers with Sting and Gilberto Gil or personalities, Nicolas Hulot to Prince Albert of Monaco.
→ EXPLANATION. The four dreams of Pope Francis for the Church of the Amazon
So many celebrities that we find at the beginning of a video accompanying this petition, produced by his compatriot filmmaker Fernando Meirelles, author of The city of God and more recently Two Popes.
“Today, with Covid-19 rapidly spreading throughout Brazil, native communities, some living in isolation in the Amazon Basin, could be completely eliminated” (Sebastião Salgado). Sign: https://t.co/sQbSOAm8Jb pic.twitter.com/1kNX7liTbC
– Instituto Terra (@InstitutoTerra_) May 3, 2020
In the service of humans
Sebastiao Salgado wanted to witness the great miseries of humanity, photographing the miners of Serra Pelada in Brazil, the victims of famine in the Sahel or the displaced populations around the world. Today, he asserts himself as one of the leading defenders of the preservation of our planet and of the first peoples. At his home in Aimores, Brazil, he founded the Instituto Terra in 2000 and raises funds to reforest 700 hectares of land depleted by years of intense farming. In 12 years, almost four million trees have been planted, it is a success.
→ READ. Sebastião Salgado, the quest for origins
Photographer or activist, the human remains at the heart of his concerns. This call to the Brazilian president to save the indigenous populations of the Amazon basin is no exception to the rule. If there is one thing that cannot be doubted with Sebastiao Salgado, once again, it is the sincerity of his commitment.