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The Edward Burtynsky Collection

This selection is drawn from a multiyear donation of works by celebrated Canadian photographer (and Ryerson University alumnus) Edward Burtynsky, whose iconic images have brought global attention to the impacts of human industry on the natural landscape. The first instalment of Burtynsky's gift, announced in 2020, includes 142 of his earliest images, created between 1976 and 1989. Each annual donation will represent another chronological stage of Burtynsky’s career, resulting in a collection that spans five-plus decades of photography on a range of subjects, including industrial manufacturing; landscapes altered for the economic exploitation of oil, water, stone, and other resources; waste and recycling; and the incursion of transportation routes in nature. At the culmination of Burtynsky's generous donation, the Ryerson Image Centre will be home to the world’s largest and most comprehensive institutional collection of this important artist's work.

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An abstract black and white photograph of a landscape.
Fig. 1

Edward Burtynsky, Early Landscape Study, 1st Year Ryerson Portfolio, 1976, gelatin silver print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Plants surround a weather concrete wall in a garden.
Fig. 2

Edward Burtynsky, Savannah, Georgia, 2nd Year Ryerson Portfolio, 1978, gelatin silver print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A marsh in winter.
Fig. 3

 Edward Burtynsky, Bruce Peninsula, 1981, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Rows of flowers in a green house.
Fig. 4

Edward Burtynsky, Holland Marsh Greenhouses, Ontario, from the series Greenhouses, 1982, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Flowers in a greenhouse
Fig. 5

Edward Burtynsky, Holland Marsh Greenhouses, Ontario, from the series Greenhouses, 1982, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Heinz Ketchup Bottling Plant
Fig. 6

Edward Burtynsky, Heinz Ketchup Bottling Plant, from the series Packing, 1982, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A room with hooks on a conveyer belt where chickens are processed and packed.
Fig. 7

Edward Burtynsky, Chicken Packing Plant, Spadina Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, from the series Packing, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Women wearing gloves, aprons and hats, inspect fruit on a conveyed belt.
Fig. 8

Edward Burtynsky, Holland Marsh, Ontario, from the series Packing, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A flock of turkeys gathered in a field.
Fig. 9

Edward Burtynsky, Turkeys, California, from the series Packing, c. 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A man holding a hose for spraying flowers.
Fig. 10

Edward Burtynsky, Flower Sprayer, Holland Marsh, Ontario, from the series Packing, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A mountainous desert landscape.
Fig. 11

Edward Burtynsky, Zabriskie Point, Death Valley, California, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A blurred self portrait taken in front of a large tree.
Fig. 12

Edward Burtynsky, Self Portrait #1, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Taxidermy animals fill the walls of a room.
Fig. 13

Edward Burtynsky, Untitled, from the series Taxidermy, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A lion in a taxidermy workshop.
Fig. 14

Edward Burtynsky, British Columbia, from the series Taxidermy, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A railway line cut into a mountain side.
Fig. 15

Edward Burtynsky, Railcuts #11, C.N. Track, Thompson River, British Columbia, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Railcuts, 1985 (printed 2007), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A railway line cut into a mountain side.
Fig. 16

Edward Burtynsky, Railcuts #7, C.N. Track, Thompson River, British Columbia, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Railcuts, 1985 (printed 2002), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

An open pit coal mine
Fig. 17

Edward Burtynsky, Mines #19, Westar Open Pit Coal Mine, Sparwood, British Columbia, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Mines, 1985 (printed 2013), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Mine tailing pond
Fig. 18

Edward Burtynsky, Mines #15, Inco Tailings Pond, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Mines, 1985 (printed 2016), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Fig. 19

Edward Burtynsky, Homesteads # 32, View from Highway 8, British Columbia, from the series Breaking Ground, Homesteads, 1985 (printed ca. 1988), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Fig. 20

Edward Burtynsky, Homesteads #29, Walkerville, Montana, USA, from the series Breaking Ground, Homesteads, 1985 (printed 2015), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A view of a bank building.
Fig. 21

Edward Burtynsky, Nicollet Mall Façade, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Minneapolis, Minnesota, from the series Banks, 1987–1988, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A view of a bank building in Toronto.
Fig. 22

Edward Burtynsky, King Street Façade, Canadian Bank of Commerce, Head Office, Toronto, Ontario, from the series Banks, 1987–1988, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Workers at the Ford Assembly Plant in Oakville, Ontario
Fig. 23

Edward Burtynsky, Ford Assembly Plant, Oakville, Ontario, 1989, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Ford Assembly Plant
Fig. 24

Edward Burtynsky, Ford Assembly Plant, Oakville, Ontario, 1989, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Boys in uniform stand in formation outside a camp cabin
Fig. 25

Edward Burtynsky, Ukrainian Summer Camp, Acton, Ontario, ca. 1990 © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A camper and counsellor at summer camp.
Fig. 26

Edward Burtynsky, Ukrainian Summer Camp, Acton, Ontario, ca. 1990 © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

An abstract black and white photograph of a landscape.
Fig. 1

Edward Burtynsky, Early Landscape Study, 1st Year Ryerson Portfolio, 1976, gelatin silver print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Plants surround a weather concrete wall in a garden.
Fig. 2

Edward Burtynsky, Savannah, Georgia, 2nd Year Ryerson Portfolio, 1978, gelatin silver print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A marsh in winter.
Fig. 3

 Edward Burtynsky, Bruce Peninsula, 1981, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Rows of flowers in a green house.
Fig. 4

Edward Burtynsky, Holland Marsh Greenhouses, Ontario, from the series Greenhouses, 1982, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Flowers in a greenhouse
Fig. 5

Edward Burtynsky, Holland Marsh Greenhouses, Ontario, from the series Greenhouses, 1982, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Heinz Ketchup Bottling Plant
Fig. 6

Edward Burtynsky, Heinz Ketchup Bottling Plant, from the series Packing, 1982, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A room with hooks on a conveyer belt where chickens are processed and packed.
Fig. 7

Edward Burtynsky, Chicken Packing Plant, Spadina Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, from the series Packing, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Women wearing gloves, aprons and hats, inspect fruit on a conveyed belt.
Fig. 8

Edward Burtynsky, Holland Marsh, Ontario, from the series Packing, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A flock of turkeys gathered in a field.
Fig. 9

Edward Burtynsky, Turkeys, California, from the series Packing, c. 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A man holding a hose for spraying flowers.
Fig. 10

Edward Burtynsky, Flower Sprayer, Holland Marsh, Ontario, from the series Packing, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A mountainous desert landscape.
Fig. 11

Edward Burtynsky, Zabriskie Point, Death Valley, California, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A blurred self portrait taken in front of a large tree.
Fig. 12

Edward Burtynsky, Self Portrait #1, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Taxidermy animals fill the walls of a room.
Fig. 13

Edward Burtynsky, Untitled, from the series Taxidermy, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A lion in a taxidermy workshop.
Fig. 14

Edward Burtynsky, British Columbia, from the series Taxidermy, 1983, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A railway line cut into a mountain side.
Fig. 15

Edward Burtynsky, Railcuts #11, C.N. Track, Thompson River, British Columbia, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Railcuts, 1985 (printed 2007), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A railway line cut into a mountain side.
Fig. 16

Edward Burtynsky, Railcuts #7, C.N. Track, Thompson River, British Columbia, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Railcuts, 1985 (printed 2002), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

An open pit coal mine
Fig. 17

Edward Burtynsky, Mines #19, Westar Open Pit Coal Mine, Sparwood, British Columbia, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Mines, 1985 (printed 2013), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Mine tailing pond
Fig. 18

Edward Burtynsky, Mines #15, Inco Tailings Pond, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, from the series Breaking Ground, Mines, 1985 (printed 2016), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Fig. 19

Edward Burtynsky, Homesteads # 32, View from Highway 8, British Columbia, from the series Breaking Ground, Homesteads, 1985 (printed ca. 1988), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Fig. 20

Edward Burtynsky, Homesteads #29, Walkerville, Montana, USA, from the series Breaking Ground, Homesteads, 1985 (printed 2015), chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A view of a bank building.
Fig. 21

Edward Burtynsky, Nicollet Mall Façade, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Minneapolis, Minnesota, from the series Banks, 1987–1988, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A view of a bank building in Toronto.
Fig. 22

Edward Burtynsky, King Street Façade, Canadian Bank of Commerce, Head Office, Toronto, Ontario, from the series Banks, 1987–1988, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Workers at the Ford Assembly Plant in Oakville, Ontario
Fig. 23

Edward Burtynsky, Ford Assembly Plant, Oakville, Ontario, 1989, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Ford Assembly Plant
Fig. 24

Edward Burtynsky, Ford Assembly Plant, Oakville, Ontario, 1989, chromogenic print © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

Boys in uniform stand in formation outside a camp cabin
Fig. 25

Edward Burtynsky, Ukrainian Summer Camp, Acton, Ontario, ca. 1990 © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019

A camper and counsellor at summer camp.
Fig. 26

Edward Burtynsky, Ukrainian Summer Camp, Acton, Ontario, ca. 1990 © Edward Burtynsky/Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. The Edward Burtynsky Collection, Ryerson Image Centre, Gift of the artist, 2019