By: Brett Bloom / BKDN BKDN
Auburn, IN: Breakdown Break Down Press, 2018
Dimensions: 5.5” x 8.5”
Color: black ink
Edition Size: 180
I do land restoration work. I write about it. Both processes take a long time. The dominant culture’s land use in NE Indiana is destructive. I am convinced that any human land use here degrades the land. It takes us ever further towards ecological breakdown.
This small publication came out of an essay and longer publication I am working on about land restoration work and the ever hardening of the rural-urban continuum that sustains my life. I felt the need to do something that didn’t take me months or years to complete and that held some urgency I feel about the situation. The booklet is a bunch of questions about uses of land that strip the land of health and make life in cities possible. The relationships in the questions are ones every person is responsible for. They deserve everybody’s consideration and reflection. The questions in the booklet may seem simple, but the answers can vary depending on the conditions of the land and its use that you encounter. Most people, but especially those in cities, do not know how to gauge the health of the landscape, let alone begin to ask questions about its conditions. This is one of the major problems that undergirds climate breakdown. Do you know how to ask if the land is healthy?
Making artist booklets is a satisfying way to process political and ecological concerns. Plus, I had paper left over from other publishing projects. I wanted to use a corner rounder and a new saddle stapler on a publication. HEAL LAND came out of these various impulses.