Yann Arthus-Bertrand

Blue Lagoon, Islande

About this photograph

Blue Lagoon, near Grindavik, Reykjanes Peninsula, Iceland (63°53? N ? 22°27? W).There are many natural hot springs in the Reykjanes Peninsula, a volcanic region in Iceland. The Blue Lagoon (or Bláa Lónid) is an artificial lake fed by the excess water pumped by the Svartsengi geothermal power station. The lagoon?s colour is a result of the mix of silica and limestone in the water combined with the presence of decomposing algae. Rich in minerals and organic material, the hot waters of the Blue Lagoon (around 40°C) are renowned for their curative properties (skin diseases). Geothermal energy is a relatively recent source of renewable energy that is clean, inexpensive and one that is increasingly exploited. In 1960, only 25 % of Icelanders benefited from this heat source. Now it covers the heating needs of 87 % of Iceland?s 319 000 inhabitants and produces 26 % of electricity consumed.

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The artist
Yann Arthus-Bertrand

Born in 1946 in Paris, Yann Arthus-Bertrand began a career in cinema as an assistant producer and as an actor. However, his passion for the animal world soon lead him first to become the director of a nature reserve in France and then to the Maasai Mara in Kenya, where he worked on his thesis, at the same time training as a hot-air balloon pilot. As a press report photographer, he has worked with magazines such as National Geographic, Géo, Life, Paris Match, and Figaro Magazine. In 1990, he completed his first documentary work combining photography and video in a project called Good Breeding. One year later, the artist and his team founded the photographic agency “Altitude”. In 1992, Yann Arthus-Bertrand decided to begin a huge photographic project that would cover the state of the world and its inhabitants – “The Earth from Above”. Published in 1999, the associated book was an international success, selling over 4 million copies. In 2006, he enters in the Académie des Beaux-arts [French Academy of Fine Arts]. Since then, he has produced a number of projects aimed at increasing awareness of ecological and environmental issues, such as the well-known films Home (2009) and Planet Ocean (2012). His highly anticipated latest film Human is due to be released in September 2015.

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