My mind has been blown! I’ve just been told about a colossal explosion that took place in Russia in 1908. Apparently, the explosion over the sparsely populated Eastern Siberuab Taiga flattened 2,000 km2 (770 sq mi) of forest yet caused no known human casualties. The explosion is classified as an impact event, however, no impact crater has ever been found, and it is thought that the actual impact was caused by the air burst of a meteroid that disintegrated at an altitude of a mere five to ten kilometres (rather than hit the surface of the Earth). More info about it here – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tunguska_event
I’m fascinated by the idea that something so epic could take place in outer space, and have an such an enormous impact on the earth and environment. I’m now VERY excited to try to watch BBC Earth’s “Best of 2016” list http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20160706-in-siberia-in-1908-a-huge-explosion-came-out-of-nowhere to find out more about “the explosion that came from nowhere”.
I have this idea to create an almost hyper-real soundscape experience of the creaking sound of old trees, drawing on the folklore associated with enchanted forests, the experience of wisdom passed down by the ‘wise old woods’ that talk – all that contained knowledge. I’ve been giving thought to the kind of trees I’d like to record ‘talking’ – as so many woodland areas in the UK are managed by the Forestry Commission, who are getting rid of a lot of non-indigenous trees, I’d like to record in arboretums and old stately homes in order to capture an ‘international conversation’, as in between indigenous and non-indigenous trees – trees that bring such breadth of perspectives to the ‘conversation’. Perhaps working with arboretums / estates might open up opportunities for exhibition opportunities too, I don’t know, but it’s a thought.
Sketches for a new installation idea about the precious and precarious nature of life…
A lot of people I know seem to be migrating back to their homeland / escaping to the country right now, as I have recently done. The majority of these people are in their early 30s, as I am, and are making the move for a better quality of life because their circumstances have changed; namely they need more internal and external space and feel the urge to reconnect with nature in some way, and for some reason.
This has got me thinking about the profound, inescapable effect that the great outdoors has had on so many people that I know in their early life. It’s got me thinking about the intrinsic link between mental and physical wellbeing and landscape, and how we are reflected in the landscape that we hold dear to us, and it is reflected in us in some way. This has got me thinking about the use of mirrors in art… and has prompted me to get me some mirror to experiment with – more on that soon.
A recent walk in the woods where I encountered a pile of felled trees got me thinking about all of the information about history ‘stored’ in those trees – that by looking carefully at a cross section of the trees it’s possible to learn so much… or so little if we are simply to chop the wood up and burn it – our choice. As so many things do, this got me thinking about pathways and the decision making process, about preciousness and disregard. I imagined the felled trees chopped into tree stumps, arranged as they might have appeared in a forest as stepping stones. I imagined them bronzed, immortalised, there to learn from, to admire, to enjoy, to play with/on. Beautiful, clever trees. Nature with all its hidden messages.
The Giant’s Causeway
Swedenborg’s “Circle of Life”