April 22, 2021

How Can Storytelling And Enchantment Help Us Navigate This Fragile And Uncertain Present, And In Turn Our Future?

Astrid Björklund

Pen & Ink, Digitally ColouredFarewell Heófon, 2021297x420 mm

Within this unravelling of our collapsing era, I have found shelter within the writing of Donna Haraway and the underworld of her Chthulucene. The underworld, as Haraway describes it, is a place thriving with speculative feminism and fabulation, compared to the overworld which is filled with false stories and sky gods. We live in a time of stories where everything is related to everything else, an ecosystem where nothing exists separately from the rest. Through illustration there is a merging of mythical elements with seemingly realistic realities, a form of alchemy that blends past, present, and future. Heading downward and northward, drawing on the theories of Donna Haraway, of the Chthulucene and the underworld, I wish to explore these narratives of these strange worlds and the critters that dwell in pale and forgotten cities. It is a chthonic speculative feminism: dark, strange, and curious, operating from both wonder and grief, melancholy and comfort: an ecological mythology. At the roots of the despairing abyss, at what seems to be the end of the world, the hazy spaces between science fact and fiction are entangled with narratives of magic and mysticism. It is re-enchantment. It is resistance.