Totem Conflatura, 2022, western red cedar, aluminium, 240 x 85 x 25 cm

Totem Conflatura was directly inspired by the large-scale forest fires devastating the woods in the Sierra Nevada. In the Sequoia National Park local firefighters wrapped fire-proof aluminium covers around the feet of the huge several-thousand-year-old trees. Aluminium covers can cope with intensive heat only for a very short time. The melting point of aluminium is 660°C or 1220°F, which is far lower than the inner temperature (1100°C or 2000°F) of forest fires in recent years.

The history of melting and shaping various metals goes back to the early period of the Anthropocene and it fundamentally changed the relationship between man and nature. Aluminium production has more than doubled between 2000 and 2020, and is one of the most energy intensive and polluting manufacturing processes on the planet.

Western red cedar was used by many indigenous cultures in the Pacific Northwest, including the Tlingit, Haida, Nuxalk, Nuu-chah-nulth, Tsimshian, Kwakwaka'wakw, and Coast Salish. It was used for many purposes, such as building houses, canoes and totem poles. It was also used for medicinal and spiritual purposes, and was burned as a cleansing and purifying smoke.



Totem Conflatura, 2022, western red cedar, aluminium, 240 x 85 x 25 cm, detail



Totem Conflatura, 2022, western red cedar, aluminium, 240 x 85 x 25 cm cm, detail



Totem Conflatura, 2022, western red cedar, aluminium, 240 x 85 x 25 cm, detail



Totem Conflatura, 2022, western red cedar, aluminium, 240 x 85 x 25 cm, detail