The Spanish Farmland Series By Tom Hegen

The Impact Of Human Presence On Earth

Tom Hegen, is a Photographer and Designer in Munich, Germany. Hegen focuses on aerial photography projects that show impact of human presence on earth. As a photographer Hegen is interested in the relationship between man and nature. In Hegens aerial photography he focus on landscapes that have been heavily transformed by human intervention.

“I am trying to sensitise the viewer for those subjects by taking a look on the extraordinary forces impacting our environment.”

“Due to permanent dry climatic conditions, a unique form of agriculture has developed in central Spain over the last centuries. In the area between Huesca and Madrid, the art of dry farming is practised. The fields are cultivated during the winter season when rainfall is just sufficient to grow crops. Harvesting takes place just before the summer heat dries out the ground. After the harvest and before rainfall, the soil is roughly ploughed to maximize water absorption. It is then sealed with rollers to reduce evaporation. The fields are also surrounded by stone walls and organized in terraces to minimize erosion. Dry farming is a sustainable method of agriculture, as the farmers use no additional irrigation other than rainfall. From the air, these fields look like expressionist paintings. The patterns of hills and terraces, the palette of earthy colours transform the area into a patchwork of organic plots, occasionally broken up by roads. Man thus becomes an abstract artist who shapes the earth’s surface.” – Tom Hegen

With the ongoing growing world population and the increasing demand for foods, access to fresh water reserves will become more and more difficult in the coming years. This series deals with the question of how global agriculture will develop in the face of climate change.