P H O S P H O R U S M I R A B I L I S
There was no snow this winter. This is the first time in living memory that there has been no thermal winter and permanent snow cover across southern Finland. Global warming has left the fields lying black and the sky coming down as rain. As a consequence five times more phosphorus fertilizer runoff has escaped into our waterways, and polluting our sea.
Phosphorus ( greek. “light-bearer” ) was discovered in 1669 in Hamburg by alchemists, who believed it to be connected to the philosopher’s stone. The 13th element, it is often jokingly called the devil’s element. A reference to its period number and foul smell. But it is no joke, our ever increasing desire for greater yields is poisoning the sea.
The Baltic coast line is likely to face an unprecedented algae bloom as a result. The misery is palpable.
I N V A D E R S
Invaders tells stories of human folly.
Once upon a time, we introduced rabbits to Australia and many parts of the world. The species has run riot and catastrofically increased in number, destroying native habitats. To add insult to injury, in order to solve the pest problem, the rabbits were purposely infected with mixtomatosis, a type of pox virus that lead to slow and excruciating death for the rabbits. It was the first human experiment in using viruses as a biological control.
The disease, like its host, escaped confines in Lausanne and Wardang island, and spread across the globe. For decades the virus has decimated over 90% of populations of not only the problem species, but many other native rabbits. Now, for the first time the virus has jumped from rabbits to several species of european hare. And when the hare go, what food will be left of the endangered predators that rely on this game?
M E A D O W
Meadow contemplates the future of our delicate meadow plants. Meadows are one of the most endangered environment types across Europe, with only 5% of meadows still left in Finland and less than 1% in many countries such as Britain. Our most delicate native flowers now struggle to live as refugees along ditches, roadsides and abandoned plots. Are these the next names to end up on the endangered species list?
The names of the paintings were inspired by the poetry of Edith Södergran.
F U R S C A P E S