Widely hailed as a major conceptual breakthrough in nature photography, James Balog’s Survivors led endangered animals out of their natural environments and into artificial studio settings. The point: Across the planet, countless animals are alienated from truly wild nature and are now living in islands of habitat surrounded by Homo sapiens. At the same time, the photographic technique employed here offers new insight into the precious beauty of each species and the individual animal. Published in 1990, Survivors: A New Vision of Endangered Wildlife, features photographs of 62 species that challenge us to reach a new understanding of animals—and ourselves. Twenty years later, new environmental problems have cropped up. Climate change is now an ominous threat to the survival of the polar bear. Industrial fishing techniques are wiping out deep-sea fish populations with horrifying speed. The pure genetics of the Florida panther (the cat featured on the cover of Survivors,) are now extinct. How many more irretrievable losses are we prepared to accept?
Animal, published in 1999, takes us on a vivid journey through the animal world. These extraordinary photographs—some never published before—explore the abundance of beauty, character and emotional power in the other animals that share the Earth with Homo sapiens.