In 2010, I lived through a period of intense anxiety and depression, and it made me feel like a mutation. Illness changed my way of thinking, feeling and relating to others in profound ways; in almost all aspects of life, I suddenly deviated from what most people consider to be normal, desirable and functional. I was conspicuous, unable to fit in, unable to fulfil expectations – those of others as well as my own. Depression was like an unwanted, malign mutation of my personality: it was ugly, frightening, difficult to accept and seemingly without purpose.
[This story first appeared in the on-line edition of Dark Mountain] Every year at the onset of Christmas I take a train to my family’s home in the hills bordering Germany and Bohemia. And every year I spend the journey’s … Continue reading →
Die Leute fragen mich oft, wie ich denn dazu gekommen bin: Obstbaumschneiden. So genau weiß ich das eigentlich auch nicht; es war keine bewusste Entscheidung. Wie die meisten Dinge, die man liebt, hat es sich einfach in mein Leben geschlichen … Continue reading →
[this story was originally published in Dark Mountain 13: Being Human in the Thick of the Present]
In the mid-nineties, the quality of New York City’s drinking water had below what the US Environmental Protection Agency considers potable. Building a sufficiently large water filtration plant would cost $6–8 billion; running it another $300 million a year. The alternative was to restore New York City’s watershed in the Catskill Mountains for some $1–1.5 billion by reducing land use and fertilizer and sewage input. Balance restored, the soil, root systems and micro-organisms would resume filtering and purifying New York’s water for free. Not surprisingly, the city council opted to restore and conserve the Catskill Mountain Watershed for what was a comparative bargain. Continue reading →
[originally published in Dark Mountain 11: The Ends of the World] My story is about two kinds of change: one slow, one very quick. It’s about the end of a way of life that is haunting me personally because it … Continue reading →
March can be a tricky time for gardeners. I constantly have to check my enthusiasm and remind myself that the warm weather will most definitely not last. It’s easy to get carried away by the first signs of spring and … Continue reading →
Late February saw some wonderfully sunny and still weather. Although it’s still cold, the longer days and sunshine seem to suggest that spring is arriving in earnest. The other day, the thermometer inside the polytunnel showed a pretty astonishing 21 … Continue reading →
For more than a decade we – photographer Jason Orton and writer Ken Worpole – have documented the changing landscape and coastline of Essex and East Anglia, particularly its estuaries, islands and urban edgelands. We continue to explore many aspects of contemporary landscape topography, architecture and aesthetics, and in 2013 published our second book, The New English Landscape (Field Station | London, 2013), the second edition of which was published in 2015 and is now out of print.