In The Lotus Eaters Wildenboer explores the repercussions of a disconnected relationship to the natural world by considering environmental aesthetics as not only encompassing natural territories, but also extending to the influence of human actions on the natural realm. The work centres around the ritualised theme of water, our complex connections with it, and how it interlinks a myriad of life forms on both a macro and micro level, in the physical and metaphysical world.
Water as a primary theme features across these different mediums referencing historical references such as Monet’s monumental paintings of water lilies, the Pictorialist photography of water lily gatherers afloat in boats by P.H. Emerson and literary references such as Homer’s Odyssey . The pseudo-scientific experiments of Japanese scientist Maseru Emoto consider water on a poetic level, whereas Da Vinci’s Deluge drawings demonstrate a scientific inquiry into the workings of water turbulence that illustrate an obsession with mathematics, chaos and fractals.
By alluding to the work of individual scientists, discoverers, authors, photographers and painters, all of whom engage at divergent levels with the element of water, The Lotus Eaters reflects upon environmental apathy as symptomatic of our state of alienation from our physical world as wellspring, the source from which life flows.