You ask me why I live
alone in the mangrove forest,
at the edge of the infinite sea.
I smile, I am silent
until even my soul grows quiet:
it lives in the other world, 
one that no one owns.
The trees bloom. 
The waves keep coming.

Inspired by the poem ‘I Make My Home in the Mountains’ 
Li Po (701-762 )

Mangroves, just as seagrass beds and coral reefs, keep coastal zones healthy. Mangroves provide essential habitat for thousands of species. They also stabilize shorelines, preventing erosion and protecting the land — and the people who live there — from waves and storms.


Mangrove forests are also called mangrove swamps, mangrove thickets or mangals. These are productive wetlands that occur in coastal intertidal zones. Mangrove forests grow mainly at tropical and subtropical latitudes. Mangroves cannot withstand freezing temperatures. There are about 80 different species of mangroves, all of which grow in areas with low-oxygen soil. There slow-moving waters allow fine sediments to accumulate.

Many mangrove forests can be recognised by their dense tangle of prop roots that make the trees appear to be standing on stilts above the water. This tangle of roots allows the trees to handle the daily rise and fall of tides, as most mangroves get flooded at least twice per day. The roots slow the movement of tidal waters, causing sediments to settle out of the water and build up the muddy bottom.


But there are many threats to mangrove forests: sea level rise, tourism, land reclamation for agriculture, shrimp farms, pollution from fertilisers from agricultural areas and waste from cities, logging... just to name a few. 

The consequences are enormous. Not only because, like all trees, they hold a lot of CO2 both in their biomass and in the soil of the forests, which is released when the forests are destroyed, but also because they house very fragile ecosystems that are lost when the trees disappear. And last but not least, the land will lose protection and people will lose their source of income when mangroves disappear.

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The Other World - You ask me why I live alone in the mangrove forest, at the edge of the infinite sea. - Surrealistic digital photo art, part of the collection Drowned Earth by Jacob Berghoef
The Other World

General info on this artwork

This is a digital transformation of a photograph, printed with high-quality ink on museum-quality, acid-free cotton/rag paper (Hahnemühle Photo Rag® 308gsm). The work comes in a limited edition of 10, signed and with a certificate of authenticity.

Maximum size is 150Wx150H cm / 60Wx60H inches. Please let me know if you would prefer another size.

For these artworks, I start with one or more photographs made by myself, which I transform in multiple process runs and in several layers by digital painting, color adjusting and adding and transforming multiple artistic effects, until a surrealistic atmosphere is created that touches me and tells the story I want to tell.

Prints are available, ask for a quote or contact me through a message. Prints are also available in my Saatchi Art portfolio at the artwork page and here.


Through my artworks I ask you to reflect for a moment on the nature around you, on the beautiful feeling that nature can evoke, on your actions to support the wellbeing of the earth and everything that lives on it, on what humanity loses when many of us continue on the destructive path of ever more greed and consuming, on how you can survive in this rapidly changing world…

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