"Landfill Harmonic tells the story of 'Los Reciclados' - 'The Recycled Orchestra' - a youth orchestra in Cateura, Paraguay, whose instruments are made out of the very trash that the town is built on.
WHEN FAVIO CHAVEZ AND LUIS SZARAN came to Cateura to start a music school, they realized that they had more students than instruments. Thanks to the resourcefulness of Cola, a Cateurian garbage picker, an orchestra came together, now featuring violins, cellos, and other instruments artfully put together from trash. Los Reciclados de Cateura, now an independent orchestra, recently performed in Brazil and Colombia under Chavez's direction."
(Nina Mashurova, 12 December 2012, Matador)
Trailer for "Landfill Harmonic". The project is being created by Alejandra Nash (Founder and Executive Producer), Juliana Penaranda-Loftus (Producer), Rodolfo Madero (Executive Producer), Jorge Maldonado (Co-producer), Graham
Townsley (Director) Jennifer Redfearn (Consulting producer), Tim Fabrizio and Neil Barrett (Directors of Photography) and Monica Barrios (Production Consultant).
"in March 1991, television screens across the world broadcast [George Holliday's] videotaped footage of LAPD officers raining down 56 baton blows on an African American named Rodney King. ... on April 29, 1992, a jury in Simi Valley, one of the whitest exurbs of Los Angeles, acquitted three of the four officers involved in beating Rodney King. The response in South Los Angeles was loud and immediate: That night, thousands of residents, black and Latino, took to the streets, starting a four-day riot that destroyed more than 1,000 buildings, injured 2,500 people, killed 58, and resulted in $1 billion in damage and 16,000 arrests."
(Josh Sides, 19/04/2012, Design Observer)
"This is a story about recycling - about how your best intentions to be green can be channelled into an underground sewer that flows from the United States [to Guiyu in Southern China].
At a recycling event in Denver, 60 Minutes found cars bumper-to-bumper for blocks, in a line that lasted for hours. They were there to drop off their computers, PDAs, TVs and other electronic waste.
Asked what he thought happens once his e-waste goes into recycling, one man told [60 Minutes correspondent Scott] Pelley, "Well my assumption is they break it apart and take all the heavy metals and out and then try to recycle some of the stuff that's bad."
Most folks in line were hoping to do the right thing, expecting that their waste would be recycled in state-of-the-art facilities that exist here in America. But really, there's no way for them to know where all of this is going. The recycling industry is exploding and, as it turns out, some so-called recyclers are shipping the waste overseas, where it's broken down for the precious metals inside.
Greenpeace has been filming around Guiyu and caught the recycling work. Women were heating circuit boards over a coal fire, pulling out chips and pouring off the lead solder. Men were using what is literally a medieval acid recipe to extract gold. Pollution has ruined the town. Drinking water is trucked in. Scientists have studied the area and discovered that Guiyu has the highest levels of cancer-causing dioxins in the world. They found pregnancies are six times more likely to end in miscarriage, and that seven out of ten kids have too much lead in their blood."
(60 Minutes, CBS, 9 November 2008)
[This activity is apparently not only restricted to the USA. According Elizabeth Grossman toxic material is also being sent from Europe and Japan.]
"In global campaigns on issues like landmines, trade, medicines or small arms, international non-governmental organisations (NGOs) face dilemmas of control. How much of the management and publicity of a campaign should they keep and how much should they give away?
Interational NGOs (INGOs) are often the intellectual originators of campaigns. They are also some of the few global organisations with the requisite money, sophistication, media expertise and brand recognition to run a global campaign. For efficiency's sake, they need to drive global campaigns.
In countless NGO communications, civil society heroes from Asia and Africa are presented as dependent second class citizens, defined primarily by their relationship to the international NGO.
Pioneering local campaigners are introduced as an "Oxfam partner" or a "CARE project". There is a colonial echo here in the implication that it is really INGOs who are saving the situation as the primary movers and shakers.
Part of the reason for this kind of post-colonial choreography by INGOs is because they are still required to be the visual mediators of the poor world to the rich world.
In Western society, our INGOs are inter-cultural gatekeepers. They know both worlds and report the one to the other."
(Hugo Slim, 30 Apr 2007)
"The Maps Descriptive of London Poverty are perhaps the most distinctive product of Charles Booth's Inquiry into Life and Labour in London (1886-1903). An early example of social cartography, each street is coloured to indicate the income and social class of its inhabitants."
(Charles Booth Online Archive)