Thirty years of exploration in wild places has taught Arita Baaijens that the separation between man and nature is an idea that exists in the western mind only. Nature is not ‘out there’, we are part of it.
During her travels, Arita was struck by the intimate way herders and nomadic people relate to the natural environment. Land in those marginal regions has spirit, contains memories and is venerated because she nourishes all living beings. Arita says:
"In the Western part of the world we’ve lost touch with nature. We treat the earth like a warehouse of materials for us to use and enjoy without constraint. To reverse the trend I visit cultures that live closer to nature and look for narratives that contain wisdom that is relevant for the 21st century. Yep, quite a challenge in a hi-tech and data driven era called the Anthropocene, but a cross pollination of traditional knowledge, science and technology can lead to new ideas and innovative solutions."
Through four different projects she investigates this relation.