A video triptych & installation celebrating the life of ancient trees.
The side walks of the canals of Utrecht are decorated with huge beautiful old plane trees. In 2016 many of these trees had to be trimmed and some even cut down because they were literally bursting out of the pavement. Every day I passed along these poor armless creatures, wondering what they have seen in their long lives. Over the years these trees have met so many people who were passing by, looking up at them or enjoying the shade. People, who have grown away from nature, people who, because of technological progress, are now looking down on their mobile devices. We come and go but the trees survive. We find in them the past, the present and the future of our existence.
The video is shown on a special screen created with recycled materials of the trees that are represented in the film. Three transparent boxes hold the materials; Ginkgo leaves, beech nut shells and plane bark, all painted white so we can see the film on them. The sound design for Beginnings was created by Temo Gonzalez Moreno. He went out to the locations of the trees to record the surroundings and human sounds. With the recordings he composed a soundscape. The Dom church tower can be heard at all locations in the medieval centre of Utrecht, a sample of the bells is included.