spatial practice and 
artistic research

the forest underneath

2-ch. video installation and inkjet print


the forest underneath is a contribution to a visual investigation of the landscape of the meuse–rhine euroregion, curated by bas princen at the jan van eyck academie.

it combines into an observational video installation materials shot on location in and around the hambach forest, the last remnant of an ecosystem that has occupied the rhine plain since the end of the last ice age – and a site where corporate exploitation, environmental activism, and environmental degradation coexist.

the forest, of which only 10% remains, borders the largest open-pit coal mine in europe, and ghost towns doomed to be torn down. planned to be cleared to mine by the energy company rwe before 2020, the forest has been a political standpoint for environmentalists since 2012, when a diverse group of activists took permanent residence within it, in self-built ‘barrios’ and treehouses, behind barricades, to protect it from planned destruction.

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in construction