Tragic carpet

Polymer clay

1200 mm x 900 mm x 100 mm

This artwork emerges from six months of investigation into biological soil crusts. Around the world, living carpets of cyanobacteria, fungi, lichen and moss can be found inhabiting the uppermost millimetres of soil. Under the most extreme conditions on earth, biological soil crusts transform uninhabitable rock into soil that is capable of supporting higher forms of life.

I witness the magic of delicate forms and finely tuned relationships. Tragically, though we owe our lives to such organic assemblages, we overlook their importance. Gradually, century-old crusts are worn to dust.

Emerging Category

by Natalie Maras