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The dream of water Reflections on its vital value

THERE IS A STABLE, DENSE, SLOW AND FERTILe WATERY MATTER THAT VEGETateS DARKLY WITHIN US

Ivan Illich

Detail (color) of the Pacific Ocean.

A couple of summers ago, I walked with my camera through a farm of orange, almond and medlar trees when a farmer came out to meet me. He asked me what I was photographing and when I told him that I was interested in irrigation and water, a gleam appeared from his excited eyes. "You have to come in winter," he told me, "when it rains a lot the river overflows and the water sneaks through the caves, which spit it out with incredible force. It shoots in all directions, more than fifty meters high, like a geyser." I still daydream trying to imagine what that fantastic show is like.

The existence of water and its nature is overwhelming for the human mind. Accustomed to hearing that it is a scarce element, it should be remembered that it is the most abundant substance on the Earth's surface, and as such, its presence in the human imaginary is practically unattainable.

The mystery of form

Is water essential for life or is life itself in motion? There are many enigmas that his character poses in our vision of reality, but it also influences our fantasies. His infinite ways of flowing, of filling the space, are so suggestive for the perception of the human being that they flood our imagination. Capable of mixing with almost any element, its continuity, uniformity and constancy is recorded in our subconscious. We have dreamed of their diverse appearances, although we may wonder if we still do.

Cinquera, El Salvador
Mendihuaca, Colombia
Boquete, Panama
The voice of time
WHAT WOULD BE OF THE IDEA OF PURITY WITHOUT THE IMAGE OF CLEAn AND CLEAR WATER?

Gaston Bachelard

Water has history. The one we drink today, with which we wash and irrigate, is the same that every living being on this planet has seen again and again rain, well, flow, evaporate. The one who taught us that nothing is created or destroyed, everything is transformed. Its infinite qualities make it not an image or an ornament of the landscape, but a support for images, because in its multiform matter the secrets of life are recorded.

Manantali, Mali

And in our history it also occupies a unique and irreplaceable place: it is the material that serves as a mirror and shapes our stories. It splashes our language with words of its own that flow in infinite water metaphors: ideas that materialize in our subconscious. So much so that it is hard for us to see it. The history of humanity is written with its drops.

Foz do Douro, Portugal
Madrid, Spain
Bogotá, Colombia

In its ability to blend with and adapt to other materials, in the constant and unconscious use we give it, it often becomes invisible. Tubes, bottles, drains, cisterns, discharges ... Also the words are mixed with water, transforming it into a fluid with which the watery matter of dreams cannot be mixed. The more materials we intermediate with it, the more invisible it becomes. And yet we need it to hydrate, to sanitize, for art. To clean and purify.

The use we make of water has made it a monotonous fluid, limited in space. We humanize water. And it is natural: it is the element that best determines our essence. But in doing so we reduce its possibilities, restrict its use and access to those who can operate the materials that confine it. Free water is key to true human development. It is urgent to hydrify humanity instead of humanizing water.

Granada, Spain
Tarifa, Spain
Montecristo, El Salvador
The fount of imagination
ONLY IN DREAMS IS THE IMAGINABLE WORLD MAP DRAWN. THE SENSITIVE UNIVERSE IS SOMETHING INFINITELY SMALL.

Charles Nodier

If we grow up in an environment that limits the infinite forms that water can take, perhaps we must ask ourselves if we are still able to imagine and feel the forms that our ancestors saw. The answer is in the world of dreams. Do we dream the same ways? Does the image of a whispering stream seduce us? Does the vision of deep stillness of a haven in peace rejoice our soul?

We have to dream about the water we want in the world to live in it. But do we fantasize about water? Are we still able to create and reproduce images of a free water? If we are not capable, does the water dream of the beings it gives life to?

Nauyaca, Costa Rica

Water, in its infinite possibilities of form and its eternal matter, has the power to dissolve us in dreams. Only if we are able to connect with it can we dream and imagine. The connection is within reach: water inhabits us in the same way that time does. Only by diving in the dark, dense and fertile waters of the imagination can we access its sacred secrets. Those of life, time and soul.

Serra da Estrela, Portugal
Uvita, Costa Rica

Text and photos: Javier Rodríguez Ros

© Javier Rodríguez Ros 2020

Created By
Javier Rodríguez Ros
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© Javier Rodríguez Ros 2020