A black and white photo project by Ali Shokri, a nature photographer with a passion for trees.
Born in 1982 Ali Shokri is an Iran-based landscape photographer with a strong passion for trees. He has been working on the Tree photo project for more than 16 years. As a result of this project, his images have been exhibited several times, he was Ted speaker, and his book ‘The Passion Of Trees’ was published in the UK, which is available at Amazon. Please read more below.
“The snow no longer cloaks our mountains in white. Our rivers have emaciated. Our wells are getting deeper and deeper, and our valleys are short of breath. The red deer do not give birth and our leopards jump to their death from the rocks of the Mount Kiamaki. Every day the papers speak of the escalation of the greenhouse gases, the depletion of the ozone layer, and the El Nino phenomenon, while the nighttime TV is filled with news of global warming, drought, and climate change.
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I do not exactly understand these issues, but every year I witness the incineration of vast expanses of the Arasbaran Forests, a unique biodiversity, which is steadily dwindling. Owing to the inordinate dam and road construction, the proliferation of factories and mines, and many other reasons, wildlife in these forests is so devastated that even lumber smugglers would feel dejected at the sight. I cannot imagine the depth of his sorrow if father were alive and could see how the walnut trees have dried out and the apricots do not blossom any more. To me, each tree, like a human being, has a tale to tell. When a tree dies, a whole story is interrupted, a destiny is altered for the worse. I feel as if the trees, bundled at the back of trucks, are cursing us with their broken hands, wounded faces, and severed roots. Perhaps this is how we are led towards damnation, little by little stripped of our humanity when man’s “abounding foliage moistened with the dew” is reduced to ash and smoke.
I know I can’t save our trees with my photographs, I can’t restore nature to its imperious verdure, yet I try to capture the lonesomeness and exile of the trees and encourage the viewers to look at nature with a different gaze, to remember that in the absence of trees the birds are homeless and there’s no air to breathe, to remember that if there are no trees humanity has already vanished.”
All images © by Ali Shokri. Have a look at our Photography section to find other inspiring images from all over the world.
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