Water Underground Origins

We’re in post production for the movie version of The Gold Fish, and I’ve been writing more about the Water Underground (read on). That also means we’re doing some spectacular events this spring. Read more here.


logo "the gold fish"

Across the United States —and increasingly across the globe—almost no river is left unbroken. One may be interrupted by a huge reservoir, the next tapped for hydroelectricity. Fossil water sits in plastic bottles on supermarket shelves, while the ancient aquifers like the Oglalla have been pumped dry without any possibility of refilling.  A bay becomes a dumping ground for municipal sewage, the leakage of abandoned mines, or industrial waste.

The philosophies of water use behind the very different kinds of water projects that create these results in disparate locations are characteristic of the Manifest Destiny approaches taken by European settlers. Now, in the Nation of Dams, humans are cut off from meaningful relation to the watershed. Aquatic ecosystems wither. Animals and people and their labor are displaced. Salmon swim towards an uncertain future.

But at the same time there’s another, underground strain of human-water relationship. This underground strain is visible in grassroots groups unearthing buried creeks and cleaning up polluted waterways. It nurtures collaborations between humans and nonhuman creatures and acknowledges their interdependence —enlisting beavers to dam creeks, wetlands to purify sewage, and fishermen to restore fisheries. It is also the eco-hydrological interactions among entities in a given watershed—rocks, animals, plants, and microorganisms—which continue in the absence of, and in spite of, human meddling. It is a loose and variously-membered cadre of artists, scientists, and water activists who share the revolutionary hope for water to rise. It inhabits not the static preordained water infrastructure that we take for granted but a living, shifting nexus of natural, technological, social, and spiritual forces.


~ by waterunderground on January 30, 2012.

One Response to “Water Underground Origins”

  1. Cleo,


    I cannot open the blog you posted today! I just get sent to this comment page.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: