In your video, an eruption looks almost graceful. One could spend hours watching it. Does volcanic lava have its own aesthetic? Of course, and I hope the video conveys this. It’s even more beautiful in person. The cascades and fountains look as if they are being choreographed by some invisible hand. Being in the presence of this force of nature can be a very emotional experience. A person has to remind him or herself that Earth is essentially revealing its innermost. In everyday life, people aren’t aware that they are only walking on top of a very thin crust. But when you see these forces up close, you are reminded of this in a very impressive way. The word “transcendence” comes to mind.
Humankind is dwarfed by nature. We are dwarfed, humbled and reminded how weak we are. If it wanted to, nature would have no trouble getting rid of us. The people who live on Stromboli – there’s a small village at the base – are aware of this every day. Nevertheless, the people there are very happy. Maybe they live more consciously than people elsewhere because permanent danger is their next-door neighbor.
So what does Stromboli sound like? What did your Sennheiser microphones reveal? Stromboli acts as if it wants to prove to the world that it’s there and should be respected. Large volcanoes tend to emit longer, constant sounds, whereas smaller volcanoes are like Chihuahuas – much more active and aggressive. Large volcanoes go: booom-booom-booom. Smaller volcanoes go: ratatatatatatatat. You know? Smaller volcanoes get more worked up. Stromboli too.