photographic study of organic structures

DENSITY - a photographic investigation on ruderal vegetation

Density is exploring the intertwining structures of wild plants and shrubs, the fine structure, subtle colouring and beauty of ruderal vegetation and brake. The Webster definition of ruderal is: "growing where the natural vegetational cover has been disturbed by humans".
Since I grew up in a countryside that is dominated by forest-industry, but also by tourism, I soon became aware of the discrepancy of preserving landscapes as stages for visitors but at the same time exploiting them. My fascination with nature and plants deepened while watching and witnessing  the overlap of “wild” and “cultivated” and the increasing disappearance of "wild".
The overwhelming evolutionary success of plants, their communication with their surroundings and with each other and, among many other theories, the interesting assumption, mankind’s conviction that plants were created to serve them, might in fact be the exact contrary, fascinate me.

Organic structures in dense intertwining

The urge to dominate, subdue and exploit nature into agricultural and forest monocultures, has made it is increasingly difficult to find spaces untouched by man outside protected park areas. It seems ironic to me that ruderal vegetation and its successors (mostly native vegetation) capturing land that had before been “disturbed by human activity” are currently the wildest and most untouched parts of nature. As these disturbed areas are in general left free of human activities for several years, ruderal vegetation and their successors can develop freely.
I find these microcosms of wilderness along roads, forest edges, old fields or abandoned areas and photograph them in late winter/early spring, when the branches and vines are still bare, but already full of sap and thus their organic layers are best visible.
I am drawn by the fine structures, delicate colouring, dense intertwining and the various, seemingly chaotic, levels of ruderal vegetation combining to a perfect picture of wild density.
Density is not only a project trying to show the beauty of organic structures by close-ups in an abstract and painterly way, but, like in my series "Out of Season" it is an expression of my personal objection against the progressing subjugation and standardization of nature for commercial gain.