Today, when there’s talk about the spheres of exploration and discovery it’s almost guaranteed to be about space travel and potential colonisation. Humans have been obsessed with the stars for centuries and more, but after a long break to tackle more terrestrial problems the focus is very much on Mars, the Moon and even further afield. However, our knowledge of our own planet is still fairly limited and as a species we’ve far from exhausted all possibilities.
In Echoes of the Invisible, the new documentary from Steve Elkins, we follow a handful of individuals as they outline their own personal quests. Al is a blind man running through the deadly deserts of Death Valley while Rachel is obsessed with photographing the oldest living organisms on Earth. Paul is a journalist walking in the footsteps of early migrants as he journeys across the world. Meanwhile, scientists build machines to look back to the beginning of time.
Echoes of the Invisible focuses on those individuals who have taken the decision to engage in the extremities of modern life. Whilst their pursuits are very idiosyncratic, they’re all characterised by an extreme focus and determination. It’s beautifully made, using the backdrops and subject matter to full effect. In a world increasingly reliant on technology, Echoes of the Invisible ponders the role of humanity and our relationship with the natural world.
Echoes of the Invisible is available to rent or own in the US on iTunes and Altavod from 22 June.