80 x 105 cm, Mixed Media
Solastalgia is a term coined by Australian environmental philosopher Glenn Albrecht, combining the words solace and nostalgia. It refers to a form of existential distress and psychological unease that is induced by negative environmental changes.
Unlike traditional nostalgia, which is triggered by longing for a past place or time, solastalgia describes the distress experienced when the environment that one knows and loves is altered, damaged, or destroyed, and is unlikely to be regained.
While the concept of the tree of life generally symbolises growth, vitality, interconnectedness, and the cycle of life, there isn’t a widely recognised and specific concept of a “tree of death.”
The “tree of death”, imagined here, might symbolise the inevitable passage of time, the fragility of life, or the impermanence of all living things. It could be associated with themes of grief, loss, and the awareness of our own mortality. The tree is depicted with withering , bear branches, fallen leaves, and a sense of foreboding, conveying a stark contrast to the lush and vibrant imagery typically associated with its counterpart, the tree of life.
The words to the right read: ‘They re-marketed our sexuality as sin, destroyed sacred places and replaced them with skyscrapers” nodding to the idea that human greed & patriarchal control have contributed to the destruction of the natural world.
“No tree, it is said, can grow to heaven unless its roots reach down to hell”