Inspiraons from the Amazon Estuary 2019
Inspiraons from the Amazon Estuary 2019
Installation with objects of nilon filements / with voice recording 2020
Dimension: ca. 3 m2
Marianne Stüve and voices of family members
In October 2019, I visited the Amazon estuary in Brazil as part of a PONTE-CULTURA e.V. Art Symposium with Brazilian and German artists. The Association works with artists from Brazil as well as with german, french and english-speaking artists to develop and exhibit joint projects. The Association is currently based in Nuremberg/Germany and works together with partners in Sao Paulo, Fortaleza and Belem.
Researchers from the University of Belèm accompanied the astonishing excursions into the inner landscape oft he island Marajó and explained to us the immense ecological importance of the mangrove groves. They told us as well about the disastrous destruction of these landscapes by intensive crab farming with chemicals. (Mangrove groves exist worldwide , 50% of them have already disappeared). - They grow in warm areas (20° water temperature), especially in estuaries, where there is an intensive exchange between fresh and salt water and where they have to cope with the tides. As there is no oxygen in the muddy soil, they developed these peculiar root systems called stilt roots. Through the pores of these aerial roots, they absorb the element that is essential for survival : the air. They also have a tremendously important role to play on our planet because, more than any other plant on earth, such as trees, forests and rainforests, they are able to absorb the harmful CO2 - and thus make a decisive contribution to climate protection.
They also protect the coastal regions from erosion and storm surges and provide local people, the fishermen, with their livelihood. Countless species of living creatures, both in the water and on land, they provide a habitat for them to develop well before they are set out into the seas. Of particular note are the crabs born here, which later do crucial development work in the coral reefs. Mangroves form an extended family, so to speak, which makes the becoming, living and passing of many species possible.
We spent a day with Brazilian ecologists and anthropologists exploring this mangrove world on the largest river island, Marajó in the world, which lies in the Amazon estuary. At low tide we visited a former slave settlement, a quilombola, which used to lie in the middle of the mangrove thicket and provided and offered refuge to runaway slaves. When the tide came in, we (like the fugitives at that time) pulled the hidden boats out of the mud and sailed with the rising waters through countless channels through the thicket. Those who did not know the mangroves had no chance of spotting the fugitives. This encounter with the mangrove world made a strong artistic impression on me. And now I’m knotting and weaving with nilon filements to create my own ‚mangrove world‘ – connecting the idea of that intelligent root system that protects and provides home for countless creatures - with human family systems that also play such an important role in human life.
- My young family members have chosen words that concern roots, their own in particular and these words will accompany the installation.
Finn: Past, future, home, family tree, homesick, wanderlust, home, bright, Adam and Eve, freedom, God, Allah, plants, tree stump, the higher being.
Johann: Cells, Africa, Adam and Eve, white, black, growth, slaves, family tree, family tree trunk, age, old, young, home, love, protection
Koya, Yoshiki, Lena and Hanna: We are similar, everybody, human being, Humans, farmers, craftsmen, white people, black people, community, Socrates: I know that I know nothing, Descartes: I think, therefore I am, science, , hunter, fire-maker, thinker, craftsman, technician, engineer, economist, politician, love , thinker, craftsman, technician, engineer, economist, politician, lover.