I am standing in a lake
Clear as a tear
For a long time it felt like I
Had lost my future
My skin leaking
Contaminated fluids Torn
Bags porous walls
I’m still waiting wasting
droplets of water
Moments of clarity are so rare
I better document this
At last the view is fierce
All that matters is
Björk, “Stonemilker,” 2015
1 “With the colonisation of the terrestrial world, outside the marine environment, the dry world transformed itself into an enormous fluid body that allows the vast majority of living beings to live in an exchange-based, reciprocal relation between subject and environment.” Emanuele Coccia, The Life of Plants: A Metaphysics of Mixture (Medford: Polity Press, 2019), e-pub.
2 “Bodies need water, but water also needs a body.” Astrida Neimanis, “Hydrofeminism: Or, On Becoming a Body of Water,” in Undutiful Daughters: Mobilizing Future Concepts, Bodies and Subjectivities in Feminist Thought and Practice, ed. by Henriette Gunkel, Chrysanthi Nigianni and Fanny Söderbäck (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), 103.
3 Ursula K. Le Guin, “The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction,” in Dancing at the Edge of the World. Thoughts on Words, Women, Places (New York: Grove Press, 1989), 168.
4 “[…] bottle in its older sense of container in general, a thing that holds something else,” Le Guin, “The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction”, 166.
5 Amongst the many conversations and discussions I had with friends, fellow students and tutors I am especially thankful to Alice Slyngstad, Alix Stria, Amy Suo Wu, Anja Groten, Christina Bierler, Clara Hopp, Colette Aliman, Daniel van der Velden, Flavia Dzodan, Georg Bierler, Ghenwa Abou Fayad, Gudrun Havsteen-Mikkelsen, Ivana Jovic, Jan Egbers, Kirsten Brandt, Lukas Engelhardt, Pernilla Manjula Philip, Manola Buonincontri, Marisa Torres Rodriguez, Marnie Slater, Quang Nguyen, Sina Egger, Tal Goldstein, Tina Bastajian and Tobias Bierler.
6 “This is poetry as illumination, for it is through poetry that we give name to those ideas which are—until the poem—nameless and formless, about to be birthed, but already felt.” Audre Lorde, “Poetry is Not a Luxury,” in Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches (Berkeley: Crossing Press, 1984), 36.
7 “Words are my matter. I have chipped one stone
for thirty years and still it is not done,
that image of the thing I cannot see.
I cannot finish it and set it free,
transformed to energy.”
Ursula K. Le Guin, Words Are My Matter (Easthampton: Small Beer Press, 2016), epub.
“It matters what matters we use to think other matters with; it matters what stories we tell to tell other stories with; it matters what knots knot knots; what thoughts think thoughts, what descriptions describe descriptions, what ties tie ties. It matters what stories make worlds, what worlds make stories.” Donna J. Haraway, Staying with the Trouble. Making Kin in the Chthulucene (Durham and London: Duke University Press 2016), 12.
8 “One of the effects of a heightened awareness of the interpenetration of the human and ahuman geologic is that it stretches my definition of ‘self’-interest to include the flourishing of the complex system of bio-geologic processes … The idea of a deep belonging between human beings and a rather volatile earth also provides much of the energy for the political project called the geologic turn.” Jane Bennett, “Earthling, now and Forever?” in Making the Geologic Now: Responses to the Material Conditions of Contemporary Life, ed. by Elizabeth Ellsworth and Jamie Kruse (New York: Punctum Books, 2010), 245–246.
9 Le Guin, “The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction”, 169.
10 Le Guin, "The Carrier Bag”, 169.
11 See Karen Barad's lecture in which they quote Niels Bohr: “The nature of nature depends on how you measure it“. Karen Barad, “Troubling Time/s, Undoing the Future,” YouTube video, 00:36:10, December 8, 2016,
12 “Construction Site”
13 Symbiotic Earth, directed by John Feldmann (2018; USA: Hummingbird Films, 2017), Amazon Prime.
14 “Nature becomes a weaponized synonym for reproduction, and everything that does not directly contribute to the survival of the species becomes an affront.” Caspar Heinemann, “FUCKING PANSIES: Queer Poetics, Plant Reproduction, Plant Poetics, Queer Reproduction,” Ecocore, June 14, 2017,
15 “People are now so immiserated that their kinship with nonhumans starts to glow through the screen of nature, a construct that since about 10,000 BCE has been the malleable substance of human projects – or its modern upgrade, the screen-like surface onto which humans project their desires. At least some humans are now prepared to drop Nature concepts, to achieve solidarity with the beings that actually constitute the biosphere.” Timothy Morton, Humankind. Solidarity with Nonhuman People, (London, New York: Verso, 2017), 33.
16 Georges-Louis Leclerc de Buffon, Histoire Naturelle Générale et Particulière, Supplement 5: Des Époques de la Nature, (Paris: Imprimerie royale, 1778), 237.
17 “Researchers say that 208 of more than 5,200 officially recognized minerals are exclusively, or largely, linked to human activity, with crystals forming in locations as diverse as shipwrecks, mines and even museum drawers.” Nicola Davis, “Minerals Found in Shipwreck and Museum Drawer ‘Show We Are Living in New Epoch’,” The Guardian, March 1, 2017,
18 Wes Siler, “51 Years Later, the Cuyahoga River Burns Again,” Outside Online, August 28, 2020,
19 Bhadra Sharma, Kai Schultz, “As Everest Melts, Bodies Are Emerging From the Ice,” The New York Times, May 30, 2019,
20 Oliver Milman,“'Great Pacific Garbage Patch' Sprawling with Far More Debris than Thought,” The Guardian, March 22, 2018,
21 “A dozen plastic particles were found. Only about 4% of each placenta was analysed, however, suggesting the total number of microplastics was much higher. All the particles analysed were plastics that had been dyed blue, red, orange or pink and may have originally come from packaging, paints or cosmetics and personal care products. […] It is like having a cyborg baby: no longer composed only of human cells, but a mixture of biological and inorganic entities.” Damian Carrington, “Microplastics Revealed in the Placentas of Unborn Babies,” The Guardian, December 22, 2020,
22 Emily Elhacham, “Global Human-Made Mass Exceeds All Living Biomass,” Nature News, December 9, 2020,
23 "Lucretius, too, expressed a kind of monism in his De Rerum Natura: everything, he says, is made of the same quirky stuff, the same building blocks, if you will. Lucretius calls them primorrua; today we might call them atoms, quarks, particle streams, or matter-energy. This same-stuff claim, this insinuation that deep down everything is connected and irreducible to a simple substrate, resonates with an ecological sensibility." Jane Bennett, Vibrant Matter. A Political Ecology of Things (London: Duke University Press, 2010), XI.
24 Carl Sagan, Cosmos (New York: Random House, 1980), e-pub.
25 Bennett, Vibrant Matter, 56.
26 Morton, Humankind, 73.
27 “The hyperobject is in my genome, it’s on my oily fingers, it’s in the sound of my starter motor. It’s under my skin and it is my skin. I myself am a tiny crystal on an asteroid.” Morton, 72.
28 Morton, Humankind, 72.
29 “[L]ong before species become extinct, their rarity may cause far-reaching changes in global ecosystems. In fact, the researchers explain, the rarity of previously abundant species and ecosystems alone may be enough to drive permanent shifts in the biosphere. A review of the fossil record, they said, shows that rarity of previously abundant organisms is the only factor tied with certainty to the widespread ecological change observed across extinction boundaries, and because of this, the magnitude and extent of rarity may provide the best comparison of the current biotic crisis to those of the past.“ Jim Shelton, “How to See a Mass Extinction If It's Right in Front of You,” Yale News, October 12, 2018,
30 Rachel Carson, Silent Spring (London: Penguin Books, 2015).
31 “Mehr als je fallen die Dinge dahin, die erlebbaren,“ Rainer Maria Rilke, “Die neunte Elegie, Die Duineser Elegien” in Die Gedichte, (Frankfurt am Main: Insel Verlag 1986), 662.
32 Le Guin, “The Carrier Bag”, 168.
33 Love and Anarchy, Season 1, Episode 5, "The Book Fair," directed by Lisa Langseth, written by Lisa Langseth, Alex Haridi, Netflix, 2020.
34 “Much like Russian matryoshki dolls, assemblages contain a sequence of ever small ones—functioning groupings of actants in a series of larger, more complex congregations.” Bennett, Vibrant Matter, 45.
35 Neimanis, “Hydrofeminism”, 108.
36 Hugo von Hofmannsthal, Der Brief des Lord Chandos, ed. by Fred Lönker (Stuttgart: Reclam 2019), 12.
37 Jeffrey Jerome Cohen, Stone, An Ecology of the Inhuman (University of Minnesota Press: 2015), 11.
38 Demand for ‘healing’ crystals is increasing but many are mined in deadly conditions in one of the world’s poorest countries. Tess McClure, “Dark Crystals: the Brutal Reality behind a Booming Wellness Craze,” The Guardian, September 17, 2019, www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2019/sep/17/healing-crystals-wellness-mining-madagascar.
39 Cohen, Stone, 256.
40 “Kick at the rock, Sam Johnson, break your bones: / But cloudy, cloudy is the stuff of stones. // We milk the cow of the world, and as we do / We whisper in her ear, ‘You are not true.’” Richard Wilbur, “Epistemology,” in The Poems of Richard Wilbur (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Publishers, 1987), e-pub.
41 Cohen, Stone, 34.
42 “Furthermore, on an inhumanly small spatio-temporal scale, tiny slivers of rock vibrate all by themselves. As we observed earlier, they do something much worse for the active-passive binary. They vibrate and not-vibrate at the same time. Operating ‘between’ active and passive, in this quantum theoretical sense, does not mean a smooth nicely put-together compromise in between; it means both/and, and this violates the never-proven but taken-for-gospel logical ‘Law’ of Noncontradiction.”xlii Morton, Humankind, 180.
43 Neimanis, “Hydrofeminism”, 102.
44 “Soil is created through a combination of the long, slow time of geological processes such as those taking thousands of years to break down rock […] and by relatively shorter ecological cycles by which organisms and plants, as well as humans growing food, decompose materials that contribute to renew the topsoil.” Maria Puig de la Bellacasa, Matters of Care. Speculative Ethics in More than Human Worlds (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2017), 176.
45 “Many versions of process philosophies help me walk with my dogs in this manifesto. For example, Alfred North Whitehead described ‘the concrete’ as ‘a concrescence of prehensions.’ For him, ‘the concrete’ meant an ‘actual occasion.’ Reality is an active verb, and the nouns all seem to be gerunds with more appendages than an octopus.” Donna Haraway, “The Companion Species Manifesto. Dogs, People, and Significant Otherness,” in Manifestly Haraway (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2016), e-pub.
1 Interview with Doctor student in Glacial Geology, Nína Aradóttir, March 14th 2020. Photo number 16
2 Magdalena Naum and Jonas M. Nordin, Scandinavian Colonialism in the Rise of Modernity: Small Time Agents in a Global Arena. (New York: Springer-Verlag, 2013).
3 Ve?urstofa íslands - The Icelandic Met Office
1 “Soil is created through a combination of the long, slow time of geological processes such as those taking thousands of years to brak down rock […] and by relatively shorter ecological cycles by which organisms and plants, as well as humans growing food, decompose materials that contribute to renew the topsoil.” Maria Puig de la Bellacasa, Matters of Care. Speculative Ethics in More than Human Worlds (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2017), 176.
2 “Reality is an active verb, and the nouns all seem to be gerunds with more appendages than an octopus.”Donna Haraway, “The Companion Species Manifesto. Dogs, People, and Significant Otherness,” in Manifestly Haraway (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2016), e-pub.
(3) “High Magic, however, was not persecuted, though alchemy was increasingly frowned upon, as it appeared an idle pursuit and, as such, a waste of time and resources.” Silvia Federici, Caliban and the Witch (New York: Autonomedia, 2004), 197.
(4) Mary Anne Atwood, A Suggestive Inquiry Into the Hermetic Mystery and Alchemy, 1850, p. 104
This is a prototype for a digital catalogue of vandalised Neolithic stones. All vandalised stones are either in Ireland or the UK. The catalogued stones range from components of Neolithic architecture such as passage tombs or more minimalistic sculptural standing stones.
The landscape of Ireland and the UK is dotted with numerous monuments; famous sites such as Newgrange, Ireland and Stonehenge in the UK are iconic tourist attractions, however most monuments are local landmarks and usually of little interest to those outside their vicinity except for enthusiasts or experts.
Built in a time that pre-dates the written word, how these sites were erected and what purpose they served can only be guessed at. However a consensus of sorts exists that they served a ritualistic or religious role of some description. Possibly because they are so old, so alien looking and since we know very little about who built them and why, the stones lend themselves to local legend, conspiracy theories, grand and minor narratives.
‘Legend Tripping’ is a term used by anthropologists and folklorists to describe a journey to a specific location and/or the performance of certain prescribed actions with the intention of electing a profound or even supernatural experience. The term generally applies to people visiting places considered haunted, off the beaten track or to have some social or even psychic significance. It’s a way in which people (predominantly teenagers) engage with the past, inserting themselves into the local folklore, by visiting, drinking, smoking, performing quasi occult rituals, and vandalising or graffiting the site. The acts are performed with the implicit awareness of the participants that their gestures will generate a story, something to brag about, adding to the existing folklore with the belief they might become part of some greater mythology.
Those who vandalised the following stones are nearly always anonymous , their motivations remain ambiguous despite clearly carving their names over ancient rock art. Some of the vandalism looks like a drunken joke, other damage appears as though undertaken as a violent act of iconoclasm. Whether the culprits had a profound or psychic experience is open to debate, what they did manage to achieve is inserting themselves, or rather, their actions into the discourse around the stones and their significance. What is valued locally, nationally, historically or culturally is out of control for most. Is this act a power grab of sorts? If winners write history, and, these stones represent the foundations of our past, is vandalising them a victory for the losers and the disenfranchised? Maybe just a victory for the bored, what seems clear is the past is always up for debate and it will always elect disparate responses…