The story began over 120 years ago, when, in an autumn storm of 1884, the French sailing ship Le Tage crashed into the rocks near Ulmale. It was on its way from Haiti to Liepaja, and it was loaded with Brazilian redwood, intended for the palace of the Russian tsar. Instead of reaching its destination, the iron-like wood sank to the bottom of the Baltic sea, where it is patiently rolling to this day. Inspired by the red “blood” color of brazilwood, I decided to find a way to animate the colors hidden within the brazilwood on canvas, and photographer Maris Locmelis captured the short moments when the wooden chips were tinting water, turning it deep red, and “the blood” of the brazilwood had not yet cooled.
This is the first part of the Brazilwood story. The part where the brazilwood cargo arrives in Liepaja, 120 years late, and shows its color at the concert hall Great Amber. Nobody knows how many logs of brazilwood are still waiting to emerge ashore, but it is clear that the red wood will inspire many more, and the story will continue.