Pneuma, video → 2019
A nine minutes visual meditation
[link to video]
“People ordinarily think of breath as that little air they feel coming and going through the nostrils, but they do not think of it as that vast current which goes through everything, that current which comes from our consciousness and goes as far as the external being, the physical world.” Lenart Škof and Petri Berndtson


For centuries, the enterprise of civilization sought to detach humankind from the wider system that is nature. The images of burning trees due to deforestation figures as one symbol of such a detachment, for it is not only the destruction of complex biospheres, but also of the foundation of life.

The world’s forests are a lifeline of all living things. They are themselves immersed in an intricate circle of inhalation and exhalation. Just as our lungs absorb carbon dioxide from the blood and infuse it with oxygen, green plants absorb carbon dioxide during photosynthesis and release oxygen into the atmosphere.

Pneuma is a meditation on the fundamental need for breathing. If humans were not breathing, they wouldn’t exist. If the planets lungs were not breathing, no living being would. Ideally displayed as an immersive video installation, the work invites the viewer to take part in a meditation on the forest and asks to contemplate on the interconnectedness of all life.


References

Terrestrial laser scan kindly provided by the Department of Remote Sensing and Photogrammetry at the Finnish Geospatial Research Institute

Atmospheres of Breathing, edited by Lenart Skof and Petri Berndtson, SUNY Press, 2018
Resonance: A Sociology of the Relationship to the World, Hartmut Rosa, Suhrkamp, 2016
Waking up with Sam Harris, Sam Harris, 2019