The multinational Monsanto® has been causing controversy for many years. Today, the biotechnology company is best known as the market leader in genetically modified seeds and the much-discussed herbicide Roundup. Mathieu Asselin (FR, °1973) has been investigating the impact of Monsanto’s® activities on people and nature for over five years.
He has photographed dumpsites in the United States, portrayed Vietnamese and American victims of the defoliant Agent Orange and exposes lobbying practices. Asselin employs photographs, advertisements, news items and many other resources to provide a clear, nuanced picture of the company’s historical behaviour - in the hope that this will give us an idea of what to expect in the future.
In 2017, the acquisition of Monsanto® by the German chemical company Bayer was announced. To date, the European Commission has not approved this takeover. Environmental organizations, scientists and human rights organizations warn of the far-reaching effects of such a monstrous merger for agriculture in the world, since “who controls food controls the people” (Henry Kissinger).
The publication Monsanto®: A Photographic Investigation (Acts Sud / Kehrer Verlag) was awarded the Aperture First PhotoBook Award last year and has been nominated for the prestigious Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2018.
The exhibition is a collaboration with Les Rencontres d’Arles.
Curators: Rein Deslé and Sergio Valenzuela Escobedo
Image: Van Buren, Indiana, 2013. Courtesy of Mathieu Asselin