Dimensions: 280 x 197
The two characters Tree and Soil together form the word Mori, Japanese for forest. In Shinto culture trees symbolize renewal, purification and refreshment through their ability to store water.
"With 'Tree and Soil' we underline the intrinsic beauty and value of nature. Connecting past and present, we examine the relationship people have with their natural surroundings. Following the transformation of the deserted landscapes around Fukushima, we often felt like archaeologists of the future, trying to understand what happened in a distant past when a mysterious force resulted in the evacuation of towns, villages, and forests, leaving only a residue of human presence.
In this publication we combine our landscape photography with material from naturalist and explorer von Philipp Franz Siebold’s collection held in the Netherlands by Naturalis Biodiversity Center. Stationed on the Dutch trading post at Dejima in the early 19th century, he had the opportunity to travel throughout the country and to take home not only a vast quantities of artefacts, plant and animal specimen but also a treasure trove of woodblock prints made by the Japanese artist Kawahara Keiga. Siebold's collections illustrate how Japanese culture is deeply rooted in and inspired by nature.
In addition we used images of scanned leaves, fruits, and branches from plants collected by Siebold which are still growing and flourishing in the Leiden Hortus Botanicus."
- Robert Knoth and Antoinette de Jong
stock number: NB369