Becoming The Forest Issue IV

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BTF IV includes specially commissioned essays, interviews and illustrations, by animists, philosophers, artists and musicians, including: an essay on panpsychism as a possible answer to the climate crisis; a philosophical-historical overview of the relationship between black metal and the forest; a magical-realist account of a sylvan trip gone wrong; an in-depth interview with Rune from Nordic Animism, whose project looks to Scandinavian folklore and customs for “hidden animist knowledge” and more respectful ways of living with other subjectivities.


The symbolism of the primstav (a calendar staff used by the agricultural societies of old Scandinavia), runs through the issue. Its seasonally-based, cyclical view of time hints towards a worldview which was embedded in its environment, and which placed man as part of - and at the mercy of- nature, rather than above it.

Contributors: Lotte Brown, By the Spirits, Crown of Asteria, Drukfout, Feral Season, Una Hamilton Helle, Hedda Hassel Mørch, Hawthonn, Rune Hjarnø Rasmussen, Invunche, Helge Kaasin, Edvard Munch, Necrofier, Alexandra Uppman, Cathy Ward

Edited by Una Hamilton Helle and Lotte Brown
Published by Het Bos Antwerpen
Supported by the Norwegian Arts Council
Designed by Tom Sewell
128 pages, 210x135mm, printed in black & white, some colour
ISBN 9789082988024
Published 15th July 2022

Table of contents:

Entering the forest
Una Hamilton Helle
Wherein time moves in spirals, and petroglyphs speak of the coming Fimbulwinter

Interview — Feral Season (US)
In which the scorched trails of wildfires are retrodden through the range of light

Nordic Animism
Excavating traditional knowledge with Rune Hjarnø Rasmussen
Wherein a Dane exhumes the remains of lost lore and discovers life therein

Interview — Invunche (NL)
In which the three-legged figure of Chilote folklore guards the secrets of a warlock’s cave

Interview — Crown of Asteria (US)
In which mythology mixes with magical intent in the Michigan mist.

Gjennom den Onde dunkle Skog
Helge Kaasin
Wherein the roots of Norwegian Black Metal are found to burrow deep into the soil of history

Interview — Necrofier (US)
In which synchronistic tales are told of a child-eating demon and a tiger-eye ring

Researchers — a Cliffhanger
Lotte Brown
Wherein the moon is swallowed, mud is tasted and the sound of bone hitting stone echoes through the forest

Interview — By the Spirits (POL)
In which a Silesian mountain is ascended and a path of ancient magick traversed

Panpsychism as environmental philosophy
Hedda Hassel Mørch
Wherein the vast, shadowy land of consciousness is explored and the limits of Western thinking probed

Interview — Hawthonn (GB)
In which the duo go searching for the wyrd sonic signatures of Britain’s edgelands

Further artworks by Lotte Brown (BE), Drukfout (BE), Una Hamilton Helle (NO), Edvard Munch (NO), Alexandra Uppman (BE), Cathy Ward (GB)