The way to preserve the ephemeral beauties of the natural world is to first endeavor to respect their inherent nature rather than trying to engineer them to suit our convenience. Artifishal, a film premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival this week, is a documentary about wild rivers and wild fish. It explores the high cost – ecological, financial and cultural – of our mistaken belief that engineered solutions can make up for habitat destruction.
The film traces the impact of fish hatcheries and farms, an industry that often hinders wild fish recovery, pollutes rivers, and contributes to the problem it claims to solve. Artifishal dives beneath the surface of the open-water fish farm controversy, highlighting citizens working to stop the damage done to public waters and our remaining wild salmon.
According the film’s executive producer Yvon Chouinard, founder of the compoany Patagonia, “Humans have always thought of themselves as superior to nature and it’s got us into a lot of trouble. We think we can control nature; we can’t. If we value wild salmon, we need to do something now. A life without wild nature and a life without these great, iconic species is an impoverished life. If we lose all wild species, we’re going to lose ourselves.”