लोक वृक्ष (PEOPLE TREE) by Ada Einmo Jürgensen in residence with ArtOxygen, Mumbai 2019. A storytelling and mapping project with the indigenous/Adivasi village of Kambachapada



The 10-day workshop resulted in an installation at the village center:

  • The children drew their daily life and thoughts, and with the help of the women, they made a map of the village.
  • They made tears from the trees, which depicted “The trees are crying.”
  • We photographed the children’s eyes and put them in the trees; this depicted “The trees are watching you.”
  • We put the children’s handprints on the trees, saying “We care for your trees.”
  • We made a booklet for everyone in the village with photos from the workshop, “People Tree Indigenous Peoples have the right to self-definition.”
  • Along with this, a 45-minute long film with the women telling their stories and about their lives was presented.
  • We had made an exhibition/installation in the village and had a big vernissage with guests coming back to the village 4 months later. Most of the installation was still there.


“PEOPLE TREE” by Ada Einmo Jürgensen in residence with Art Oxygen, Mumbai 2019. A storytelling and mapping project with the indigenous/Adivasi village of Kambachapada.

In my preparations for coming to work with the village in Aarey Forest, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India, I searched Google Maps to find the village. It was not on the map. Just a white area saying Milk Colony Unit No. 25.

This reminded me very much of the situation we have in Sapmi, where we have to prove our many thousand-year-old existences on this land every time the majority and other colonizers need our land for wind turbines, mining, etc. In the Aarey Forest, they were at the time threatened by the cutting of the forest to build a Metro Rail.

We decided to put Kambachapada literally on the map. During a 10-day workshop with the inhabitants of the village. The village leader, Vanita Tai, got all the children and the women involved. ArtOxygen provided producer Abigail D’souza, a translator and project worker. Aparna Bangia and the film team Mandal Inc. documented the photos and filmed the whole process.

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