“Beautiful and powerful work at the intersection of fine art, science, and philosophy, spanning seven continents and exploring issues of deep time, permanence and impermanence, and the interconnectedness of life. With an artist’s gift for ‘aesthetic force’ and a scientist’s rigorous respect for truth, Sussman straddles a multitude of worlds as she travels across space and time to unearth Earth’s greatest stories of resilience, stories of tragedy and triumph, past and future, but above all stories that humble our human lives.”

— Maria Popova, Brainpickings


"With vision and dedicated persistence — think of a hip, female Shackleton — she has tracked down and brought these organisms to our awareness in lush photographs (taken with 6x7 film camera) and vivid text."

— Adam Harrison Levy, The Design Observer

From the jacket

“The Oldest Living Things serves us the humbling profundity and pathos of things that live almost forever. We see our abstract selves and feel the terrible bludgeon of that which we cannot have and are fated only to behold.  Rachel Sussman brings you to the place where science, beauty, and eternity meet.”

— Jerry Saltz, Senior Art Critic; New York Magazine


“I am in awe—awe staring at my planet's old sages, who know the way things were, will be, and should be—awe when I appreciate Rachel Sussman's epic quest to round them all up and her daring in stealing their souls with her photographs.”

Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator of Architecture & Design, MoMA


“The Oldest Living Things in the World adds in dramatic manner a fascinating new perspective—literally, dinosaurs—of the living world around us.”

Edward O. Wilson, University Research Professor Emeritus, Harvard University


“Contemplate life through the time scale of The Oldest Living Things, and you'll find your mind expanded and heart inspired. I'm thrilled to see Rachel's powerful TED talk develop and deepen into this captivating book. “

Chris Anderson, TED Curator


“Longevity means continuity. Long-lived people connect generations for us.  REALLY long-lived organisms, like the ones Rachel Sussman has magnificently collected photographically, connect millennia.  They put all of human history in living context.  And as Sussman shows, they are everywhere on Earth.  This book embodies the Long Now and the Big Here.”

Stewart Brand, Co-founder, The Long Now Foundation


“Something astounding happens when Rachel Sussman photographs the most ancient organisms to be found across our planet.  A fraction of a second of time in her photographic exposures animates forms that have evolved across nature's deep time to create a profound experience of being alive.  Sussman's ten-year investigation of the symbols of the earth's ecology is rigorous and exploratory, realized with such generosity to the reader and her ambitions make an impossibly vast subject both felt and understood.”

Charlotte Cotton, Curator & Author, The Photograph as Contemporary Art