The Savage State

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic humanity has all but disappeared from public spaces. The Savage State is a cinematic exploration and record of the natural world’s reaction to this unprecedented season in Earth’s history.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic humanity has all but disappeared from public spaces. The Savage State is a cinematic exploration and record of the natural world’s reaction to this unprecedented season in Earth’s history. 

In a season where it’s been hard to find silver linings, one of the most beautiful and profound has been to watch the natural world venture into humanity’s suddenly abandoned public spaces. In an unprecedented display, we now have the privilege of seeing the natural world’s response to a short break from the unrelenting engine of human activity. Along with the striking visuals of animal life suddenly roaming our city centers, we are also seeing dramatic drops in air pollution making once obstructed vistas crystal clear again, literally changing the backdrops of our lives. 

In the tradition of lyrical and non-verbal films like Koyaanisqatsi or Baraka, The Savage State will be a visual meditation and cinematic record of this very specific moment in the history of planet Earth. The project’s title comes from the first painting in Thomas Cole’s 5 painting series “The Course of Empire” which famously tells the story of one piece of land through time. The series explores humanity’s influence on that plot of earth with the graphic rise and fall of an imaginary city. 

The spirit of this project is totally exploratory. There is no agenda or specific environmental message we are seeking to make here. The goal is not to make a scientific argument about nature’s ability to recover. It is to simply document what this unique moment looks like through these specific citizens/filmmakers’ lenses. We are also aware of the trending, controversial, and parodied, “The Earth is healing, we are the virus.” memes. That’s not what we’re doing here. 

WE are looking for video clips of unusual plant/animal activity in places usually inhabited by humans…really any plant/animal behavior you find interesting/unusual associated with the sudden disappearance of the human race in public spaces across the globe due to COVID-19.