VIDEOKOPPI | 12.8.-29.8.2023
I grew up in Estonia in a peatland forest called Kõverdama. At the moment Kõverdama is being prepared to be cut down by a mining company with the goal of expanding the peat extraction for the production ofgardening soils.
The film consists of broken and incomplete 3D scans of beings from
Kõverdama. They tell stories of the place that used to be, is and will
be. In this work, ghosts of trees float above the destroyed landscapes, flowers growing in punctured spaces, memories creeping in the broken world. It’s clear that a forest cannot be reduced to numbers and pictures, a few species or resources. If the destruction is done the result is this haunting presence.
I use 3D scans of flowers grown on the peat from Kõverdama. I grew
two Cypripedium reginae – a close species to Cypripedium calceolus, an endangered flower whose habitat will be destroyed if the mines are expanded. Cypripedium reginae is a way to show how humans adjust the world according to their needs, in this case, being more decorative and commercially available. This peat from the mines is shipped abroad and used as gardening soil and fertiliser for beings far from Kõverdama with the cost of destruction of a whole ecosystem for the resource. It brings up the question of what is valued in this process? It’s clearly not the existing relationships that are ripped apart.
By contrasting the living, the nonliving and digital I create a web of
connections without an edge or a centre, interconnections that exist
as part of an ecological system. With this web, I bring into question the destruction that is done to this land, to the relationships. The story of Kõverdama is a story of humans, non-humans, living and nonliving.
It’s important to respect and value what we don’t yet understand
and perhaps never will. Humans have a tendency to see everything
as quantifiable and making things somehow understandable for the
system that we live in. It’s time to let go of this view of the world in the face of the ecological crisis. Let’s embrace the unknown and respect it, learn from it, let it tell us the story and through that see the values beyond the monetary and measurable, values that are hidden in the relationships.
I place myself somewhere between artist and designer with a touch of a filmmaker. As a designer I see value in aesthetics as a tool to access the viewers’ attention and as an artist I am interested in the relationships that humans and nonhumans have; the artificial dichotomy and tension that is dividing the world into natural and unnatural. I grew up in Estonia in a peatland forest called Kõverdama, which is the defining aspect of my creative work. I feel a strong connection to that land and everything that is inhabiting it, living or nonliving. Through that connection I see the world as an intertwined relationship expanding through every aspect of life.