Photographer Gaston Lacombe doesn’t hate zoos. He just thinks some of them need improving.

For the past four years, he’s been trying to make that point with a series of photos called Captive. All of the photos are shot from regular, public viewing areas and are meant to highlight the poor or unnatural conditions some animals live in when they’re removed from their normal habitat.

“Even in the very best of zoos you still find animals placed in horrible cement enclosures or little glass boxes,” says Lacombe, who was born in Canada but now lives in Washington D.C.

Captive shows zoos from nine different countries on five different continents. Lacombe’s images have a melancholy feel to them — not overly dramatic, just real. They’re an anthropological study of humans encaging animals to be viewed safely and leisurely.

[MORE: Zoo Photos Capture Caged Animals’ Melancholy]

(Source: Wired)

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