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amazonas - the concept

In the spring of 1800 Alexander von Humboldt and his French fellow Aimé Bonpland reached the Rio Negro. Coming from the mouth of Orinoco, he had passed the Brazo Casiquiare and thus proved the existence of the long doubted natural connection between Orinoco and Amazon, the two most powerful rivers in South America.

In September and October 2000 - the spring of the Southern hemisphere - Ekkeland Götze and Jean-Philippe Beau-Douëzy started from the Ilha de Marajo in the river delta of the Amazon, where potsherds of over 3000 years old cultures lay to the daylight. They travelled to Santarem by line boat, from there they visited Caboclo communities at the Rio Tapajos and Arrapiuns, and travelled further to Manaus, the famous rubber town in the jungle, where - despite of all rumours - Caruso never sang. It is the place, though, where the black waters of the Rio Negro pour forth into the muddy waters of the Amazon river. Following the Rio Negro, they continued their journey crossing the Equator and finally reached the Brazo Casiquiare in Venezuela.

51 SOIL samples were collected on this journey. All excavating sites were reached from the water, always following the river line. Thus about 5000 miles were covered by boat.

The excavating sites were chosen by the people living at these sites. All sites have a particular spiritual, mythological, cultural, historical or everyday life's meaning for the people at these places.
At each excavating site EG made a portrait by photo of the person involved in the action. In addition, a photograph of the sky above the excavating site was taken and a recording of the noises of the environment and the stories of the people was made.

The realized work demarks a line in the most powerful river system of the EARTH and touches the settlements of an astounding diversity of people and cultures in what is to be considered the largest rain forest of the EARTH.