Stretching - from the boreal wilderness of northern Karelia
to the soft meadows of western Estonia,
to all well-wishers,
residents of the Gulf of Finland Basin are proud to present
the great lakes of Onega, Ladoga, Ilmen and Peipsi, and
the whole Finnish Lake District.
Providing the Baltic with a quarter of all sweet water,
the four great rivers -
the untraceable Kymi and the powerful Neva,
the luxurious Luga and the sorrowful Narva,
whose throat was cut in the 1950ies,
did make, once upon a time,
the Gulf of Finland a highly-productive, estuarine eco-system.
Plum in the middle of this priceless oyster,
what the authorities in St. Petersburg think about
environmental education . . matters very much
to Finland and Estonia, and not least to Muscovy.
As regular workers, great artists and global citizens,
as members of the European Union and Russian Federation,
as proud Finns and Estlanders,
we may turn our heads this way or that, but
if we reside in this basin we are nothing if not . .
residents first and foremost of the Gulf of Finland Community.
From west and east millions have lost their lives . .
at the bidding of this or that reichstag,
but who really needed their zealous corporations,
or their damned barbed-wire borders?
The era of Lengidroproekt has gone and,
may God forbid,
we do not need
a new Hansa.
We work for the return of the European sturgeon
to white water between Long Hermann and Ivangorod.
We work for the return of the shoals
of the pelagic 3-spine stickle-back . .
to the aquatory east of Suursaari.
For then, when these have returned,
we will know, from bottom up,
everybody is receiving what they need most.
Then we will be ready to say . .
'We are members of the Baltic Community'.
Love and protect.
Enjoy and explore every second.
Richard Thompson Coon
Viapori, July 2011
A container installation by Richard Thompson Coon as a compliment to the Rescue Boat Silakka project and as a contribution to Capsula's 'Expedition to the Baltic Sea', European Cultural Capital, Turku 2011.
Note: Because of the chaos of negatives, slides and prints that was the common nightmare of pre-digital activists, the 20 pictures presented in this slide show are just scans of post-card size prints that were kept for reference. Hopefully one day the original negatives and positives can be dug up from somewhere. The 20 snapshots presented were taken during campaigns and expeditions around the Gulf of Finland during the 1990ies and first few years of this century.