Eight things in nature so old you’ll feel young

From ABC Environment, 10 March 2015:

THERE IS SOMETHING about extreme age that fills us with awe.

It’s hard not to feel it, when standing in the presence of a huge eucalypt that has raised its branches to the sun since long before European settlement. Or when watching the silent majestic form of an immense whale, which has outlived several generations of humans, glide through the dark blue.

Sometimes it takes a little more intellectual investment to find that awe, like when staring at a grey-green patch of lichen that grows just one centimetre every century and which has weathered the harsh climate of Southern Greenland for more than 3,000 years.

“In thinking about the natural sublime and awe and that sort of thing, a lot of it is tied to scale and to time,” says Rachel Sussman, a New York-based contemporary artist who has spent 10 years researching and photographing some of our planet’s oldest living entities.

Sussman has taken an extraordinary series of photographic portraits, published in her book The Oldest Living Things In The World. Read more.

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