Published on November 3rd, 2014 | by GrowWNY Intern

¡Buen Vivir! – Climate Change: Faces, Places & Protest


In October, I had the opportunity to attend the grand opening of Orin Langelle’s gallery, ¡Buen Vivir!, which showcased the exhibit “Climate Change: Faces, Places & Protest – Photos from the front lines.” The gallery proved to be a very powerful, eye-opening experience about the effects that climate change has upon people all the world over.

The name of the gallery, ¡Buen Vivir!, is a concept stemming from indigenous Latin American culture. ¡Buen Vivir! means life in harmony between humans, communities, and the Earth – where work is not a job to make others wealthier, but for a livelihood that is sustaining, fulfilling and in tune with the common good.

According to Langelle, “This is a concept slowly spreading northwards and I am helping bring it to Buffalo through the images in my photography gallery.” Langelle Photography, a project sponsored by the Global Justice Ecology Project, documents the “struggle for societal transformation toward justice, equity and ecological balance.”

Photo credit: Langelle Photography

Photo credit: Langelle Photography

The photos, taken over 25 years, illustrate the effects of climate change, including “the impacts it has on communities, ecosystems and human rights struggles.” The gallery details events ranging from the aftermath of natural disasters, to UN Climate Conferences, to rallies and protests where people were often violently silenced, as well as the struggles of individuals, including climate refugees suffering from rising food prices and drought, and native peoples whose land is being destroyed by climate change.

Langelle says, “As a concerned photographer, my goal is not just to document and expose the harsh reality of injustice—much of which is linked with the struggle for the land—but to inspire viewers to participate in changing the world, while helping empower those striving for justice because they know that photographs of their struggle are revealed to a larger audience.”

Photos line the walls at the ¡Buen Vivir! Gallery.

Photos line the walls at the ¡Buen Vivir! Gallery.

The ¡Buen Vivir! Gallery, located at 148 Elmwood Avenue, is open now through December 19, 2014, for Special Events or by appointment only. It will be open for a special Walking Tour on Friday, November 7, 2014 at 6:30 and 7:30 p.m., which will be led by photojournalist and gallery curator Orin Langelle.

For more information or to set up an appointment call: 716.536.5669

Learn more about Orin Langelle and Concerned Photography here.

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