F O R  E  S  T   5   X   5

e l z a         
b e r z i n a 

As a Latvian, my cultural background seemed to create an idea of nature as a coexisting partner. An entity of fertility and forgiveness. In music school I had to sing Latvian folklore songs about talking to trees, finding storage under land-stones, and forming a relationship with the wind. Most of our surnames are the names of trees, rivers, hills, and forest animals. My own surname for instance means a birch tree. Unconsciously it seemed to form my relationship with nature in isolation. More and more nature became a body of purity and inviolability. It became an entity to cherish and protect but it also created a separation between human and nature. Me and nature. It was a close coexistence but not an equal position within all in existence.

when moving to the Ntherlands my fascination with forest grew more and more. The dif.....


We are facing an undeniable climate crisis. Our perception of nature has become a crafted and segmented area of governance. 

There are more than 800 commonly used definitions of a forest.

A forest can be considered a forest if it reaches a threshold of 0.5 hectares with trees higher that 5 meters and canopy cover of more than 10 percent. Witch initially makes 25 cubic meters of tree covered space a forest.

An area completely lacking trees may still be considered a forest if it ever grew trees in the past, will grow trees in the future or was legally designed as a forest regardless of the vegetation type.                      

                                     (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Forestry Department)

Between unreadable graphs, shocking images and judgemental activism, information about the environmental crisis has alienated it is intended audience. Forest 5x5 explores alternative ways of recognising and empathising with the challenges of todays environment. Creating an experienceable representation of nature trough an act of embodiment.

We can not escape our human bodies, but we might be able to expand the capabilities of the mind by facilitating bodily sensations and gaining physical empathy towards a forest. Shifting the Ego towards the Eco and closing the gaps between humans and non-humans.

The aim of this experience is to facilitate the understanding between this complex entity and the participants by looking for their similarities instead of differences.