Dark Mountain: Issue 25

Our twenty-fifth book is an anthology of non-fiction, fiction, poetry, interviews and artwork inspired by the struggle for land rights, and by the living land itself.

Land is the ground beneath our feet, but it is so much more than that. Those who act in its defence are fighting for many things: for the right to access food and water; for the existence of other beings, of rivers, mountains, lakes and trees; for the right to build a home, or to live without one; for the right to walk without fences and to sleep beneath the stars; for connection and imagination; to resist invasion.

 This book gathers voices from around the world – from Cameroon to Mexico, from Portugal to Palestine, from Wales to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, from Singapore to the leafy lanes of the Oxfordshire stockbroker-belt. Some pieces take the form of dispatches about navigating difficult territories, while others take a longer view of history and deep time. The language of rights can be anthropocentric, couched in terms of ‘who owns what’ – but what happens when we flip such assumptions on their heads? Does the land belong to us, or do we belong to the land? What happens when we expand our perception beyond the human?

As with all Dark Mountain books, awareness of the land’s aliveness underpins everything. Whatever the ground on which you stand, we hope the words and artwork in this issue offer different ways to navigate its changes.

 

Writers: Ahmad Al-Bazz, Alice Albinia, Damian Le Bas, Hugh Brody, Amy-Jane Beer, Daniel Bye, Chris Christou, Tim Fox, Evelin Grauen, Robin Grey, Briony Greenhill, Heather Gorse, Daniel Grimstone, Murairi Bakihanaye Janvier, Justin Kenrick, Anthea Lawson, Jerald Lim, Tomás Ó Loingsigh, Garth Martens, Annie McBay, Olivia McCannon, James McConnachie, Alaistair McIntosh, Zakiya McKenzie, Samuel Nnah Ndobe, Sara Pereira, Sophia Pickles, Tabitha Pope, Paul Powlesland, Susan Raffo, Paul Rankin, Electra Rhodes, Erin Robinsong, Ceó Ruaírc, Juman Simaan, Wesley Stine, Fred Warren, Eirwen Abberly Watton, Adam Weymouth, Albert Woods, Stuart Wrigley

Artists: Fern Leigh Abbot, Joe Black Ardy, Esther May Campbell, Jim Carter, Madison Emond, Freya Gabie, Emma Göransson, Nick Hayes, Emily Joy, Maria Latumahina, Rosalind Lowry, David McGlynn, Megan McInnes, Tara Nicholson, Ava Osbiston, Ben Readman, Christy Rupp, Andreas Rutkauskas, Kaiwharawhara Stream, Ruth Webb, Ella Whittlestone, Lawrence Winram

Editors: Nick Hunt, Anthea Lawson, Adam Weymouth. Art editor: Ava Osbiston. Production: Nick Hunt. Editorial assistant: Ava Osbiston.

Cover: ‘Deershake’ by David McGlynn

 

Dark Mountain: Issue 25 is a hardback book, 256 pages long, printed on FSC-certified paper

ISBN 978-1-8384160-6-5

Dark Mountain: Issue 23 – Dark Kitchen

Our twenty third book is a feast of stories, poetry and artwork that explore food culture in a time of converging ecological crises – from the devouring agricultural machine to the restorative fermenting jar.

Dark Kitchen is based on our online series that set out to document the regenerative acts of resistance happening in kitchens and fields around the world. In this book, we taste the sweet and salt, the sour and the bitter. We look deep into the belly of the beast: into the factories of ultra-processed food; into the slaughterhouse knocker box; at starvation on the Arctic sea ice; in an elite dining room where endangered animals are on the menu.

But among the clatter of our pans, we also remember the connections that nourish the living world: the wild salmon of the Atlantic and Pacific that feed the forests; the seaweed that creates a garden on a Hebridean island; the microbes that link the wild yeasts in Montana to the whiskered wheat of East Anglia to the sourdough loaves that feed a locked-down hill community in Australia. Food that makes sense of everything, even as the civilised world falls apart.

With recipes and reportage, poetry and production techniques, gathering and gleaning, myths and metaphysics  – do join us around our convivial kitchen table!

 

Writers: Robert Alcock, Augustin of the Road, Simeon Ayres, John Barron, Antonia Bertucci,  Chris Christou, Kimberley Coburn, Charlotte Du Cann, Charlotte McGuin Freeman, Ben Gibbons, Randall Jason Green, Dougald Hine, Max Jones, Daniela Kato, David Lauer, Thomas Little, Kate Long, James Macconachie, Matt Miles, Gregory Norminton, Rob Percival, Kate Rich, Kim Schnuelle, Mark Watson, Hanna Charlotta Wernerssen, Matthew West, Adam Weymouth, Miek Zwambourn.

Poets: Sharon Black, Sean Borrowdale, Gaylord Brewer, Nickole Brown, Nancy Campbell, Giles Goodland, Mark Goodwin, Emily Hasler, Michael McLane.

Artists: Jo Aris, Eva Bakkeslett, Pascal Baudar, Monique Besten, Peter Cameron, Anne Campbell, Cooking Sections, Max Jones, Nick Jordan, David Lauer, Ava Osbiston, Superflux, Graeme Walker, Miek Zwambourn.

Editor cooks: Nancy Campbell, Charlotte Du Cann, Nick Hunt. Art editor: Charlotte Du Cann. Production and editorial assistant: Ava Osbiston.

Cover: Metate, Mano y Maíz Azul (Mortar, Pestle and Blue Maize) by David Lauer

 

Dark Mountain: Issue 23 is a hardback book, 256 pages long, printed on FSC-certified paper

ISBN 978-1-8384160-4-1

 

 

Dark Mountain: Issue 21

Our twenty-first issue revolves around the theme of confluence.

The image of watersmeet, of two streams merging into one, has long had sacred connotations, as shown by the votive offerings left at the point where rivers meet. This book goes beyond watery metaphor to explore confluence in its complexity: both life-affirming and death-bringing, nourishing and troubling, creative and destructive. Increasingly, the times we live in feel like a confluence of catastrophes: climate, ecological, political, cultural and existential. ‘Collapse’, as poet Sophie Strand notes, ‘is when things that shouldn’t be connected merge.’ The climate disaster unfolding around us is itself a convergence between the breakdown of ancient organic matter and modern industrial ambition, technology, greed and carelessness, a calamitous meeting of worlds. 

In the white noise of this chaotic merging, as disparate channels flow into each other and catastrophes impend, do we try to find solid ground, to hold fast in the roiling current that threatens to carry us away? Do we attempt to dam the tide? Or do we look to the words of the Greek philosopher Heraclitus – panta rhea, ‘everything flows’ – as we try to navigate down the unknown river?

From modern-day lycanthropy tales – inter-species minglings between human and animal – to the melting, freezing waters of the Antarctic Convergence; from intergenerational trauma to the disastrous coming-together of nuclear meltdown; from the collapsing ‘Doomsday Glacier’ to swirling microbial ecosystems deep within the human body; the contributions of the 60 writers and artists in this book join to make new patterns in this meeting of the waters.

 

Dark Mountain: Issue 21 is a collaboration with saltfront, the environmental humanities journal founded in Salt Lake City, Utah by Eric Robertson and Michael McLane. Inspired by Dark Mountain’s early work, saltfront is dedicated to a radically new type of ecological storytelling, with a focus on human habit(at).

 

Writers: Ellery Bakker, Lillian-Yvonne Bertram, Russ Bickerstaff, Nathanael Bonnell, Cayte Bosler, Charlotte Du Cann, Tim Fox, Alexander Fredman, Helene Grøn, Hannah Hindely, Nick Hunt, Stephanie Krzywonos, Anthea Lawson, Nancy Lord, Sarah Jane Moloney, Kate Moore, Steven Morgan, Ceda Parkinson, Tonia Peckover, Ian Peisner, John Rember, Eric Robertson, Minna Salami, Wren Schulte, Laura Seldner, Conrad Shumaker, Vita Sleigh, Jane Smith, Sophie Strand, Wanda Taylor, Sylvia Torti, Graeme Walker

Poets: Jeffery Beam, Sharon Black, Adam Gianforcaro, Finn Haunch, Joel Long, Michael McLane, Paul Rankin, Kim Trainor, Jonathan Travelstead, Christopher Watson

Artists: Oliver Raymond Barker, Gustaf Broms, Fatemeh Burnes, Peter Cameron, Esther May Campbell, Justin Carter, Blake Donner, David Ellingsen, Kathryn John, Sarah Misselbrook, Anika Nixdorf, Ava Osbiston, Veera Kaamos Pitkanen, Christy Rupp, Noah Alexander Isaac Stein, Jordan Tierney, John Weeden, Graeme Walker

Editors: Nick Hunt, Anthea Lawson, Eric Robertson. Poetry: Michael McLane.  Art: Ava Osbiston. Production: Nick Hunt.

Cover: ‘Meander’ by Cecily Eno

Dark Mountain: Issue 21 is a hardback book, 264 pages long, printed on FSC-certified paper

ISBN 978-1-8384160-2-7

Dark Mountain: Issue 19

Our nineteenth book revolves around the theme of death, lament and regeneration.  

With escalating reports of species extinction, the loss of habitats, and now a global pandemic, many people are waking up to the grief and loss that have threaded through the work Dark Mountain Project since it began. During a decade of descent, the books have appeared like small arks bobbing on a dark ocean, containers for creative work that mourns both ecological and cultural collapse and celebrates the beauty of a vanishing world. 

Our core question we took with us as we began this voyage: How can we face and properly lament what has gone? 

Shrouded, like a moth inside its cocoon, this collection sets out to hold ways to collectively mourn the loss not only of our fellow humans, but the wild world that has always succoured us. Our forebears knew the effect the dead have on life and the importance of grieving, of keeping the dead close. Our task was to find the words and images that mark the loss in ways we might have forgotten but still lie deep buried within us: how we might, like Caroline Ross, fashion our own Grave Goods out of deerskin and bronze, occupy the Houses of the Dead as in Fawzia Kane’s poems, and bear witness as Stephanie Krzywonos does, watching a penguin walk to its death in the arid Antarctic interior. How we can encounter the currents of the mythic beneath the ordinary world on a South Dakota highway as Samantha Wallen reminds us in The Death Mother.  

The book has been created as a memorial by 60+ artists and writers, a gathering of testimonies from people and places, grief walkers and haunted lands. Ringed by the ashes of the burned forests of Australia and the Americas, entwined with the now-vanished tree roots of Deru Anding’s native Borneo, it enshrines the broken bones of dead creatures, reconfigured in ceremonial staffs by Jim Carter or intricately observed drawings by Kathryn Poole, the fallen feathers of the gyrfalcon, the wren and the black grouse, the testimonies of ancient grains and antediluvian fossils, wreathed by leaves of roseroot from Greenland and milkweed seeds from Ontario, the sharp scent of Mexican marigolds that light our way to the Underworld.   

Words and images to take with us as companions into the dark…

 

Dark Mountain: Issue 19 has been created in collaboration with art.earth’s symposium ‘Borrowed Time: on death, dying & change’, a series of events taking place until 2nd November designed to explore insights around end-of-life care and death practices and share healing rituals for both people and the land.

 

Writers: Luanne Armstrong, Monique Besten, Nancy Campbell, Samantha Clark, Charlotte Du Cann, Mike Cipra, Kathryn Edwards, Edward Freeman, Linda France, Christos Galanis, Jay Griffiths, Anna Hatke,  Tiffany Higgins, Chris Kohler, Stepanie Krzywonos, Chris La Tray, Michael McLane, Matt Miles, Liadan Ni Chuinn, Kerri Ni Dochartaigh, Joanna Pocock, Sean Pett, Margi Prideaux, John Rember. Maeve Reilly, Carrie Rhys-Davies, Stewart Sanderson, Richard Skelton, Gabriel Thomas Stevens, Matthew Teller, Samantha Wallen, Weylyn Wolfe,

Poets: Ellery Akers, Stephen Ajay, Sharon Black, Dom Bury, Adam O. Davis, Rebecca A. Durham, Marc Kaminsky, Fawzia Kane, Pippa Little, Jane Lovell, ,Michael McLane, Nina Pick, Prageeta Sharma, Sophie Strand.

Artists: Deru Anding, Sara Angelucci, Jim Carter, Katie Ione Craney, David Ellingsen, Sarah Filmer, Sarah Gillespie, Gizem, Yvonne Love, Kirsten Norrie, Stephen Melton, Dan Porter, Kathryn Poole, Caroline Ross, Gabrielle Russomagno, John Thomson, Sophy Tuttle, Sean Vicary, Graeme Walker, John Weeden, Wild Conspiracy, Kate Williamson, Rachel Wolfe.

Editors: Nancy Campbell, Joanna Pocock, Michael McLane. Poetry: Nina Pick and Em Strang  Art and production: Charlotte Du Cann. For Borrowed Time: Christos Galanis and Mat Osmond.

Cover: It’s OK to Look by Graeme Walker

Dark Mountain: Issue 19 is a hardback book, 264 pages long, printed on FSC-certified paper

ISBN 978-1-8384160-0-3

Walking on Lava: Selected Works for Uncivilised Times

This new paperback collection brings together essays, fiction, poetry, interviews and artwork selected from the first ten issues of Dark Mountain.

In the autumn of 2016, the members of our core editorial team – Charlotte Du Cann, Dougald Hine, Nick Hunt and Paul Kingsnorth – sat down to reread everything we had published to date and pick out 40 pieces with which to introduce the project to new readers. With many of our earlier issues now sold out, this is also a chance to bring some classic Dark Mountain contributions back into print.

The book opens with the project’s original manifesto and the selected works are organised around the eight principles with which the manifesto concludes.

 

“Don’t read this book if you’re not willing to be shaken and unsettled. Unflinching and unafraid!”—Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature

“This book changed my life. It puts into words the sense of utter hopelessness I feel about the fate of the world as we have known it. And yet, miraculously, it gives me ‘hope beyond hope’ for what lies ahead. The Dark Mountaineers are blazing new trails into, and through, the hot lava of our uncertain future.”—Eric Utne, founder of Utne Reader

“We humans are in trouble, and because of us, most of our fellow species are also in trouble . . .  To find our way through the ruins and beyond, we need more than clever technology and magical markets. We need an alternative to the industrial mindset . . . We need the kind of diverse, clear-eyed, ecologically wise imagining gathered in this book. A bow of gratitude to the denizens of Dark Mountain.”—Scott Russell Sanders, author of Dancing in Dreamtime

“A collection by turns magical, brave, earnest, and mournful but truthful throughout. The authors point the way down a faint but still visible trail beyond domination and back to our once and future place as humble animals in love with our world.”—Lierre Keith, author of The Vegetarian Myth; coauthor of Deep Green Resistance

The Crossing of Two Lines

 

 

‘Sometimes we use the term religious art or sacred art, but I really prefer venerative art. Because, as I see it, the upper middle class, the good-taste people, they do venerate like hell…’

The Virgin of Guadalupe appears before a camera crew on a Mexican hillside. A wooden shrine is hammered to a watchtower on a deserted Soviet army base. A stonemason fixes a cross to the roof of a roadside chapel in his family’s village. Since 2008, the work of Stockholm-based artist duo Performing Pictures has taken an unexpected turn towards themes of Catholic devotion. The results are still sometimes shown in galleries, but their primary function is within the religious lives of the communities with whom they are made.

The Crossing of Two Lines is a collaboration between Performing Pictures and Dougald Hine, co-founder of Dark Mountain. It is both a document of this work and an investigation into the discomfort that it has caused among their art world contemporaries. From the Croatian island of Rab to the pueblo of Zegache in Oaxaca, Mexico, hundreds of colour photographs chart the making and use of these venerative artefacts. Meanwhile, in a series of texts – one essay, four interviews, ten short poems – Dougald traces the intersecting lines of personal and collective experience which meet in this work.

‘We are used to art that employs the symbols of religion in ways seemingly intended to unsettle or provoke many of those to whom these symbols matter,’ he writes. ‘Yet to the consumers of contemporary art, those who actually visit galleries, it is more uncomfortable to be confronted with work in which such symbols are used without the frame of provocation.’

The book is published by Elemental Editions and distributed in the UK by Dark Mountain.

Dark Mountain: Issue 13 (PDF)

This is a PDF download of Dark Mountain: Issue 13

Time stops, or seems to for a moment: a woman falls from a tree and doesn’t remember falling, or she waits by a fire in a forgetting time, or she stands in a coal pit, in Australia or Germany, her body on the line. A man swims out and merges into the ocean tides; another runs across the peaks, his feet on the wild land. One child is ushered in by the ancestors. another is refused entry by the future. Our paintings on a rock, meant to last for millennia, are swept away by the storm. Our words become covered in leaves, entwined with the lost tracks of animals. Letters turn into trees, pages burst into flames, language fragments and coheres in another shape.

What happens when we capture and inhabit that moment? When we hold time in our bodies and not in our minds? What story do we now tell?

The thirteenth Dark Mountain book focuses on what ‘being human’ might mean in an age of rapid ecological and social change. Held between covers of painted limestone, these writings and artworks reflect a culture entering an epoch that has been named ‘the age of humans’ (or the Anthropocene). From the trepidations of bringing a human life into the world, to the responses which rise within us – humour, grief, despair, concern – when confronted daily with a society veering out of control.

Eric Robertson and Emma Giffard examine the familial and social burdens we inherit; Sarah Thomas explores the themes of resilience, relinquishment and restoration in the face of a devastating house fire; Alf Hornborg outlines the global games which humans play and how we can see through them; Sara Hudston celebrates the long history of human coexistence with the horse; Andrew Boyd‘s ‘gallows humour’ highlights the crucial role of laughter in serious times, illustrated by Natalia Zajaz’s comic take on ecological change.

The book’s colour plates also reflect this diverse response, ranging from Anne Campbell’s micro-photography unsettling our human-centric perspective and Katie Tume’s iconic embroidered figureheads of mass extinction.

The issue features writings, interviews and poetry from aJbishop, Anne Bergeron, Olga Bloemen, Alastair Bonnett, Andrew Boyd, Cate Chapman, Mike Cipra, Raoul Dalmasso, James Disley, Charlotte Du Cann, Neil Eccles, Paul Fidalgo, Carrie Foulkes, Delia Garigan, Brian George, Emma Giffard, Kim Goldberg, Harvye Hodja, Kyle Holton, Alf Hornborg, Sara Hudston, David Iaconangelo, Anthea Lawson, Garry MacKenzie, Michael Malay, Michael McLane, Nalini Nadkarni, Mat Osmond, Nina Pick, Abby Rampone, Sarah Rea, Eric Robertson, Mark Rutter, Francesca Schmidt, Tom Smith, Sarah Thomas, J.B. Turnstone, Ben Weaver, Jane Woodhouse and Natalie Young.

The artists whose work weaves through its pages are Amory Abbott, Jenny Arran, Alex Boyd, Gustaf Broms, Anne Campbell, Katie Ione Craney, Katie Holten, Bruce Hooke, Ron Jude, Nicholas Kahn and Richard Selesnick, Ilyse Krivel, Darrell Koerner, Daru McAleece, Robin V. Robinson, Caroline Ross, Katie Tume, Kate Walters, Julie Williams, Kate Williamson and Natalia Zajaz.

The editors for this issue are Cate Chapman, Charlotte Du Cann, Eric Robertson and Tom Smith.

Dark Mountain: Issue 13 is a hardback book, 272 pages long, printed on FSC-certified paper.

ISBN 978-0-9955402-3-1