Good evening. It’s my pleasure to be able to introduce you to an evening of truly magical moments through
the work of Canadian artist, Marek Zaleski. I don’t know how long each of you has lived in this part of the
world or what brought you here. I don’t think it’s possible, though, to live here without being struck at least
occasionally by the extraordinary natural beauty that surrounds us.
Marek Zaleski arrived in Winnipeg from his native Poland in 1982 and ten years later decided to come to
Vancouver Island. He brought with him the perspective of both an outsider and an artist and was
immediately impressed by the power of the landscape. The summer of 1993 found him in the Carmanah
Valley, one of the largest remaining tracts of the ancient temperate rainforest on earth. He turned his camera
and his artistry to preserving the immense beauty of this place and sharing them with people in Canada and
around the world. The collection “A Journey into the Spirits of the Ancient Rainforest” subsequently was
shown to 100 000 Canadians during numerous exhibits across the country and the idea of Canada’s first
wilderness museum dedicated to the visual conservancy of the beauty of Pacific Northwest was born.
Marek’s work then, as now, is founded on the belief that an intimate relationship between people and the
natural world can inspire, empower and heal the human soul. We are among the fortunate few who live
with nature at our doorstep, accessible to us if we have the time and make the effort. But this is a luxury
not available to most, and Marek’s ambition has been to bring the beauty of nature to as many as possible
through the artistic medium of photography and cinematography.
Marek’s vision of the natural world encompasses both the very small and the immense; it echoes William
Blake’s injunction to “see the world in a grain of sand”. And so Marek envisions his work displayed in a venue
like this, in the hospitals, schools, business centres, airports and other public and private spaces.
His life-long project to capture the earth’s beauty continues to evolve along with the technology that makes it
possible and Marek sees the next stage being the transformation of his work to the IMAX format and mobile
TV Channel so that his unique creation can reach a bigger audience on the big and small screens.The work
you will see tonight is the latest addition to that project to be followed by new chapters from Quadra Island,
filmed during the four seasons to come.
So, let me outline for you the shape of the evening:
You will notice that there are four of the newest amoled screens, each showing a different silent cinematic
composition. You’re invited to spend time in the company of each. Marek considers his earth cinematography
presentations to be “living paintings” or “wellness ambiance’’, and they will reward that level of inspection.
And now, I’d like to invite you to engage in an intimate experience with natural beauty through the work of
Marek Zaleski. I know you’ll take pleasure in observing these vignettes of nature at her most beautiful, but I
hope you’ll consider how these images might be used.
- How might they educate and inspire, even those in urban environments far removed from the natural world?
- How can they heal and relieve the stress of our frantic lives?
- How can they act as a form of visual conservancy, preserving forms of beauty that are in danger of being lost?
- Perhaps most importantly, how can they act as a catalyst for change at the individual and societal level?
Please enjoy launching of the “Earth’s Magic Moments” by Marek Julian Zaleski, a collection of a
stunning nature cinematography, for healing, rejuvenations and creativity.