'A Brooklyn artist visits the garbage dumps of Rio de Janeiro to paint the ragpickers. On the face of it, the project might seem to reek of exploitation. But what if the artist were to involve the locals, auction off the works and donate the proceeds back to the ragpicker community? Then it would become a novel philanthropic strategy, closing the loop between an artist and the people who inspired him. This is the story of Waste Land, the new documentary about Brooklyn's Vik Muniz and residents of the Jardim Gramacho. Muniz's work is valuable, not just as an act of charity or an art project, but as a model for humanitarian intervention.'