The fireman´s forest

The fireman´s forest. Watermaal-Bosvoorde, 2022. Graphite, watercolour and digital painting.

Years ago, I don’t know why, a rather grim image came to me. With zero scientific knowledge, insufficient data, no real awareness of fossilisation. In an absolute lack of rationality, I saw buried the complete skeletons of all human and non-human animals from the beginning of creation. There was no exact number, just an almost infinite multitude of bones already protruding to the surface and forming hills. That fantastic image stuck with me. 

I have always been disturbed by the subject of death. I remember as a child going to my parents’ bed at night crying because I was anxious about the void I imagined after death.  Over time I also began to worry about the fate of what is left of us here.

And why did I choose this title for this work? From that image, I began some doodles that have recently become this illustration. In the first sketches, I drew some trees on the surface that only had two branches and looked like crosses. Then I realised that, even if unconsciously, I might have been influenced by the artist, also a firefighter, Marc Sellarès. In 2016 he finished an artistic installation, “El Bosc de les Creus”, as a tribute to the forest fire in the municipality of Òdena. That work fascinated me.

Sometimes we look for references to inspire us. Other times references seek us out, but we are not always aware of how they enrich us. Whenever I realise such an offering, I like to show my gratitude to the one who has given it to me.

For those cases where I don’t get to see these gifts, I apologise in advance for not being attentive enough.

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