Forest Room

Where is your home? How is your identity shaped?
Why do so many talk about roots, homeland and cultural origin just now?

Forest Room deals with issues of belonging, of re-finding and defining one's identity
and origin. It uses forest as a metaphor to examine the meaning of home and
identity in transit. The work situates, conceptually, forest room as an archetypal
space anywhere on earth. It creates an illusory place that is inherently private yet
accessible to all.

Forests in ancient cultures were experienced as powerful places for contemplation
where supernatural beings and forces dwell. In archaic mythologies of arctic people different notions of symbolic trees, World Tree, Cosmic Tree and Tree of Life are known to have represented sacred retreats and continual regeneration of the universe. Trees have provided us with shelter, food, tools, paper, medicine, musical instruments, jewelry, vehicles, fire, even clothes. Trees in part keep the atmosphere clean and protect the soil from erosion. Today only about a third of the world's land surface remain covered with forests. The balance of the global ecosystem is being compromised. Are we willing to let the forests become the critical point along which the humankind will finally destroy itself?

Forest Room is the story of a forest, the idea of a forest sandwiched between the past and the future. All possible combinations of place and time exist inside this story. The viewer can be simultaneously outside and inside, far and near, absent and present. Identities are detached from the date and place. The story has no beginning, end, or middle; you can walk into it at any time.

The project was financed with a grant from
The Cultural Foundation of Finland.

© Sarianna & KirsiMarja Metsähuone 2002