Codex / Decodex

Elise Northover

Geologic time is not human time, however humans are now considered to be their own geologic force, moving more sediment in a single year than the earth’s own natural processes. Human extraction and redistribution of the earth’s natural resources have caused irreversible damage to the earth’s landscape.

This project is a purely fictional account of the large earth experiments of the head researcher and team of ‘decoders’ at a place called The Observatory. It is the decoders duty to create a repository of information (codings of the landscape) with the intention to deconstruct the processes of natural resource extraction and the remediation of the sites where the extraction has taken place, by collecting data from these sites.

Current remediation processes don’t take into consideration the timescale that these sites need to remediate themselves. When humans exhaust deposits of ‘valuable’ resources from the ground, the ground changes, both spatially and materially.

The Observatory proposed that resource from the ground was to be extracted beyond its verge, so that the ground become an unstable entity whose only response can be a geologic event. A geologic event is a markable trace of geological processes occurring when intersecting forces become unstable, these forces act to modify geological entities, such as the topography of the ground. The geologic event causes remediation of the ground at geologic scale. These panels are excerpts from two books that were made during the project. ‘The Codex’ documents current natural resource extraction processes and proposes geologic events as an alternative remediation technique. ‘The Decodex’ speculates on possible landscape futures of these sites.