Land of Diatoms

From the reconstruction of a dissapearing traditional paving technique to a non-conventional mapping of different ways of understanding our environment. Land of Diatoms documents the historically charged migratory movements within the region of Castille and Leon in Spain through the study of diatoms. Diatoms are microorganisms extremely sensitive to chemical changes and are generally used to analyse water quality. There is a thin layer of silica covering every diatom’s outer shell which allows them to fossilize easily. It also makes it possible to analyse agrarian cycles like the arrival of the Romans, the Industrial Revolution or livestock farming. Their ease of dispersion makes them present in any environment regardless of whether there was or is water. Furthermore, diatoms outline a series of invasions where species migrate resulting from human activities.

Una investigación sobre la relación entre el ser humano y las parcelas geográficas castellano-leonesas. Las diatomeas son microorganismos muy sensibles a cambios químicos del agua y por ello son usadas para analizar parámetros ecológicos como la calidad del agua. Al ser organismos recubiertos por una pared de sílice, estos son fosilizables y, a través de su estudio, es posible analizar ciclos agrarios marcados por ejemplo por la llegada de los romanos, la revolución industrial o la ganadería.

Land of Diatoms is a collaboration alongside María Boto Ordóñez and Susana Cámara Leret, accompanied by researcher Dr. Saúl Blanco Lanza (Diatomology Lab from the University of León) and botanist Dr. Estrella Alfaro. It is commissioned by LAB987 at MUSAC, supported by Universidad de León, represented by the Area de Actividades Culturales and Departamento de Diatomología from Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas and The University College Ghent, School of Arts KASK.

Land of Diatoms
A close-up magnification of diatoms Diatoms are present in any environment regardless of whether there is or was water Diatoms are present in any environment regardless of whether there is or was water