Louis Helbig, photographer. Alberta Tar Sands

The soil is the great connector of our lives, the source and destination of all. –Wendell Berry

Looking at soil, the basis of plant life, and much of our food system is an important part of thinking ecologically. Today’s link post points to some soil based projects that we have come across.

Denmark has 68 distinct soil types. Do you what kind of soil you live on? Find out here: Landskabselementer.

Dirt. This collection of essays edited by landscape architect Megan Born rethinks dirt, identifying it as a source of inspiration, a design tool and a metaphor for living. Can’t wait to read this one.

596acres.org, this Brooklyn based public education project has mapped 596 acres of vacant lots in New York City. Their goal is to turn the lots in to gardens for food production with the hopes of creating a food sovereign city. They made a really awesome map and we have a couple copies left if anyone in Copenhagen wants one.

The Harrison Studio with Helen and Newton Harrison.  The Harrison’s are longtime environmental and ecological artists, pioneers in the field. They have made several projects dealing with soil. Notably, Art Park: Spoils’ Pile Reclamation,  (1977) , in which they realized that topsoil was endangered globally and proceeded to organize a community to make their own topsoil from compost, and The Shape of Turned Earth: A Brown Coal Park for Sudraum Leipzig (1996), in which they propose a large scale lake building project for the soil of southern Leipzig decimated by coal mining.

Photographer Louis Helbig has been documenting the Alberta Tar Sands, this horrendous source of oil that is being developed and expanded, and if not stopped will prove disastrous for global climate change, speeding it up and making it catastrophically worse. More of Helbig’s photos can be found here at Beautiful Destruction. We initially saw this work posted on Eco/Art/Scot/Land, a blog run by our friend Chris Fremantle.

The Lakota Nation has been very active in communicating why the Tar Sands oil extraction process is so bad for the environment and in stopping its spread across North America.

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