Vessels of Life

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Life Vessels are a grateful response to the gift of life. They are a tribute to Divine design; from the circulatory system within the human body to the unfathomable mysteries of the briny deep. There is nothing new about water culture. The science, sometimes referred to as hydroponics, is a study of the way water works in both natural and artificial environments, to deliver essential nutrients.

These delivery systems can be seen as an extension of the circulatory system. People who are engaged in agriculture, aquaculture and horticulture have been working on ways to extend natural circulatory systems for thousands of years. The Chinese Floating Gardens, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and the Aztec Raft Gardens are all fascinating examples of water culture.

Our geologic history book reveals that some one half billion years ago, marine life was well established in the sheltered bays of our planet. Volume upon volume, stone page upon stone page unveil era upon era of progressive development as ancient inland seas deposited these fossilized remains. Just as the briny fingers of the continental oceans reached far inland, salt solutions also circulate throughout our bodies.

As the oceans contracted and their saltiness increased, a wide variety of organisms adapted to fresh water and land, adjusted through salt conservation. As the poet said, “The dust we tread upon was once alive.” The history written upon fossil bearing stone clearly shows that water culture was the very first culture on earth. These and other culture techniques would be combined and developed over the millenia and, together with the evolving sciences, serve to increase human understanding of environmental factors affecting growth.

Management of the root zone and the aerial environment were among the essential control factors making possible a new level of scientific inquiry. Over the intervening centuries, human kind labored to produce a knowledge that would include our own growing medium with special emphasis on the food chain. Mastery of plant culture techniques produced repeatable results in the study of plant interaction through mineral nutrition, gas composition, and the factors of photosynthesis. The term hydroponics was derived from the Greek word “hydro,” meaning “water” and “ponos,” meaning, “work.” These waterworks have become the foundation or laboratory platform for ongoing research into sustainable development.

Now, in McMurdo, Antarctica, a research station features a hydroponics facility producing fruits and vegetables to support scientists studying the South Pole. The crews of nuclear submarines dine on strawberries grown in on-board hydroponics chambers. Astronauts on long duration space missions enjoy fresh lettuce and tomatoes, not to mention fresh oxygen, thanks to the combination of new technology and the wisdom of the ancients. The individual works of art that we call Life Vessels were considered meaningful to the artist that found the material and gave it a new purpose. It is now our hope that these items will be of some edifying value to you.

© 2012 The Aevia Charitable Trust (The ACT) — Robert H. Kalk – Lead Trustee

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