Our surrounding landscapes are no longer wild and no one seems to remember they ever were. How we got from there to now is an agricultural story told by and about humans, placing them at the center stage within a passive and inanimate landscape. Natural spaces became settlements, plants were cultivated, animals enclosed and fields ploughed. Insects became plagues, fungi the enemy and soil a dead substrate.
But if we open our eyes and look further than our first sight, we realize a mistake has been made, and the wrong story has been told. It’s not only humans that form the landscape, not only farmers that grow the crops. It’s also the fungi, the bacteria, the worms and nematodes. Only to those who look more thoroughly will they reveal themselves.
Kiki Muyres is an organic farmer and gardener, but most of all an observer. It’s the beauty and diversity of the nonhuman world around her that drives her farming practice and leads her to question daily how we could best include them.
All photographs: Kiki Muyres
This is part of FIELDS, a section of The Learned Pig devoted to exploring fields as natural and (agri)cultural, invisible and visible, poor and productive, created and creators. FIELDS is conceived and edited by Marloe Mens.