In transit

Crossing the arctic circle. This time going south, returning from a short, but intense two-week field-trip in northern Finland. As part of a small group of artists and scientists we followed a geologic layer that exposes 540 million year old trace fossils to our modern eyes.  Traces of burrowing animals that lived on the Baltica, when Baltica was not Baltica and still located near the opposite pole. Contemplating the space-time depth is mind boggling. 

Finland, Kilpisjarvi September 2021

The landscape we traverse is overwhelmingly beautiful. It is also inhospitable, yet humans have lived in this region for thousands of years and the Sami continue to do so. It is confronting. Questions arise, about our relationship with these past life forms, with the current landscape and everything in between, discussions ensue. Life and death. Despite this overwhelmingness, the physically demanding trip inspires and excites us.

Friesland, October 2021

Back home and trying to makes sense of it all. I read an article in the Sunday paper about a plant infected with a certain parasite that then stays in a state of perpetual adolescence, in essence it never grows old. It seems like a dream for our modern society, eternal youth.

I speak on the phone to one of my Finland team members, we talk about how we miss the intensity of trip, the feeling of the body on alert, the senses sharpened. How we prefer to rather live short and intense than long and uneventful, if we had to choose. 

https://bioartsociety.fi/projects/arc-hive/posts/field-notes-2021-traces