Dark Mountain: Issue 13 (PDF)


The Spring 2018 issue is a collection of essays, fiction, poetry and artwork about what it means to be human.


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