Gods Land - Flag, video projection and plaque
Link to Animation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndVvGmYL2D4
God’s Land, an animation of a burning tree projected onto a flag, repeats like a mantra: the tree catches fire and burns to a black silhouette with a loud crackling sound. Cobh, the last port of call for the Titanic, is an apt setting for Clare’s thoughtful show, which seeks to chime a warning bell in a gallery perched on the edge of a rising ocean.
Christine Leech - Sunday Times Review
Gods Land takes the illegal trade of charcoal in Somalia as its starting point to examine the environmental impact of financial markets.
In the space we see an animation projected onto a black screen hung in the manner of a flag, who's design is similar to the one used by the militant group Al Shabaab.
On the opposite wall is a plaque of an article I first read in the Financial Times back in 2014 detailing the role Al Shabaab plays in the illegal trade of charcoal in Somalia and the devastating environmental impact this is having. This charcoal trade is worth millions of dollars each year and most of the charcoal ends up in the middle east to be used with Hookah pipes. It is a source problem of deforestation as entire swaths of acacia forests of southern Somalia are clear-cut which, decreases local biodiversity as species that relied on the acacia groves are unable to survive without them.
With forests destroyed, local residents must move to other areas in order to survive, or engage in the charcoal trade themselves, which only deepens the cycle of destruction.