In the honor of Earth Day, we've created a special edition of ‘74Picks.

While we have this extra time at home, we have an opportunity to take a moment to appreciate our beautiful planet, reflect on how our own lives affect nature and the climate crisis, and rethink the way in which we wish to live. 

We can take this day to appreciate nature and learn something new about our home planet through a range of documentaries, books, and virtual exploration. 


The Adventures of Alexander Von Humboldt by Andrea Wulf

In Wulf’s remarkable novel meet the great lost scientist and daring explorer Alexander Von Humboldt. Credited with being the first scientist to acknowledge man-made climate change, follow the visionary’s voyage through Andes mountain range, the rainforests, drylands, and volcanoes of South America, & his encounters with indigenous people, colonists and missionaries and flora and fauna of every kind. 





“The 'Profoundly Radical' Message of Earth Day's First Organizer” by John Schwartz

One day in the fall of 1969, Denis Hayes, a graduate student at Harvard, snagged a 10-minute meeting with Gaylord Nelson, a United States senator from Wisconsin who had been talking up his idea for a national teach-in about environmentalism. The visit stretched into a two-hour conversation, and at the end of it Mr. Hayes had a job. He ended up organizing the original Earth Day on April 22, 1970. Read the rest on the New York Times.



Follow the life of Dr. Jane Goodall, one of the world’s foremost primatologists and discover the astonishing story behind Goodall’s unconventional and pioneering chimpanzee research.






The Salt Of The Earth

Directed by Wim Wenders and Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, this documentary showcases the life of photographer Sebastião Salgado, a photographer who spent 40 years documenting deprived societies and hidden corners of the earth. 


Flight of the Butterflies

Directed by Mike Slee and narrated by Megan Follows, this short but compelling documentary is about the yearlong migration of the monarch butterfly from Mexico to the U.S. to Canada and back. 





Into the Inferno 

Werner Herzog and volcanologist Clive Oppenheimer travel the globe and visit volcanoes in Indonesia, Ethiopia and even North Korea in an attempt to understand man's relationship with one of nature's most violent wonders.






Google Treks

Travel the globe using google maps treks, take a journey to the Great Barrier Reef, the Grand Canyon, the Himalayas, the Amazon Basin, and Everest Base Camp among many more. 



Henri Rousseau, The Dream, 1910.

Although Henri Rousseau had never been to a jungle in his life, this large oil-painting achieves to depict the intoxicating beauty of an imagined jungle. Visit MoMA’s website to view it online.


Peter Doig, Red Boat (Imaginary Boys), 2004.

Painted two years after Doig returned to live and work in Trinidad, this painting embodies the essence of the Caribbean and the fertile tropics. The hanging lianas shimmer with the haze of humidity, alive with the unseen creatures of the jungle. 


The Golden Record

NASA placed a phonograph record on Voyager 1 and 2, containing sounds and images that portray the diversity of life and culture on Earth, intended to communicate with extraterrestrials.