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Suicide Forest, Aokigahara, Japan, 2008 | by Simon Vahala
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Suicide Forest, Aokigahara, Japan, 2008

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«Instantly, a complete silence overcomes us. It is not the kind of silence in the absence of words - in their suspense, when expecting them to come and to explain - but silence of a world where words never existed and never will. It is a silence of things that simply just happen, with no one noticing or caring. The subject ? Nature inscribed by human intervention, perhaps. But here, these signs come out positive, as signs of culture, where human beings are equal to nature, where nature and culture are two sides of the same coin, not fighting, but living together, complementing one another. In this world we understand that human enterprise exists for a reason, and that there is an angle of viewing it from where it comes out noble and monumental - in its clear technical functionality – noble and monumental like nature that surrounds it. The works of art we are dealing with here are not politically loaded in the fashionable sense of the word, i.e. when it is known to all of us in advance what one is to think and to feel and we can phrase it as to why exactly things are so. Here, in silence that tunes us to the frequency of a butterfly flapping its wings while flying, we do not know how to put into words what we feel. That allows the feeling to stay with us and live its own life even when we no longer look at a specific photograph at hand.»

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Taken on August 10, 2006