resource extraction systems

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project description

nullTerra is a series of interactive data visualization artworks that depict large-scale resource extraction systems. nullTerra presents Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data relating to energy, forestry and petroleum industries as well as transportation networks. These industrial systems are imposed on representative landscapes generated from GIS data that approximates terrain, vegetation and hydrological features. nullTerra invited viewers to witness the cumulative impacts of resource extraction on a continental scale.

Beyond evidence of the anthropocene, nullTerra also serves as a depiction of colonization. Across Turtle Island (North America), the displacement of of indigenous peoples was justified by settler society through the doctrine of Terra Nullius, where land was considered to be unoccupied unless it was exploited for profit. Patterns of colonization are evident by the cumulative footprint of resource extraction systems as well as the boundaries indian reservations, parks and protected areas. Through exposure to cumulative data that is otherwise unseen by the public, nullTerra prompts consideration of the systematic domination of ecosystems wrought by industrial capitalism.