Atmos Vol. 5 Hive Is a Candid Portrait of Nature in Collaboration

Out of the ordinary images and thoughts investigating the ways we can exist in supreme connection to the world around us

'The Altered Destiny' photographed by Daniel Obasi
'The Altered Destiny' by Daniel Obasi

Written by Amulya Hiremath, edited by Tansy Kaschak on 10.15.21

Everything we have and everything we see has been touched by someone else — the t-shirt we are wearing, the coffee we drink, the chair we are sitting on, someone, somewhere created it. Even when we stand alone, we stand surrounded by others. Our life is a constant collaboration. With Volume No. 5 titled ‘Hive’, Atmos Magazine explores this intrinsic collaborative spirit between humans, nature, and culture. The Earth is in constant interaction with its beings and whatever we are, we are a product of this dynamic.

'Mythos and Mycology' photographed by Alexandra Von Fuerst
'Mythos and Mycology' by Alexandra Von Fuerst
'The Night Shift' photographed by Gareth McConnell
'The Night Shift' by Gareth McConell

Championing the most critical conversations in  ‘Climate and Culture’, as their tagline goes, translated in visually rich and thought-provoking storytelling, Atmos is a future forward bi-annual magazine, each edition having an overarching theme. The Hive issue comes with the ever so relevant question “How do we work together?” and proposes a myriad of answers that inevitably invite to a deep consideration of our place in the web of life.

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Atmos Vol. 5 Hive Is a Candid Portrait of Nature in Collaboration Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 01 by Ben Toms

Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 01 by Ben Toms

Atmos Vol. 5 Hive Is a Candid Portrait of Nature in Collaboration Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 02 by Daniel Obasi

Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 02 by Daniel Obasi

Atmos Vol. 5 Hive Is a Candid Portrait of Nature in Collaboration Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 03 by Evan Atwood

Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 03 by Evan Atwood

Atmos Vol. 5 Hive Is a Candid Portrait of Nature in Collaboration Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 04 by Colin Dodgson

Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 04 by Colin Dodgson

Atmos Vol. 5 Hive Is a Candid Portrait of Nature in Collaboration Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 05 by Denisse Ariana Perez

Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 05 by Denisse Ariana Perez

Atmos Vol. 5 Hive Is a Candid Portrait of Nature in Collaboration Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 06 by Ben Toms

Atmos ‘Hive’ cover 06 by Ben Toms

The heart of the matter comes early with the article ‘The Hive Mind’. In this day and age, nothing better imitates a beehive than social media with its endless mazes and carefully structured algorithms. While virtual platforms have had their fair share of success stories — spreading the word of important protests, promoting movements supporting valid causes — with this power also comes incredible responsibility. If we are to survive, we not only need to learn our lessons in unity and honesty from the bees but we also need to protect them, the article calls.

'The Hive Mind' photographed by Maisie Cousins
'The Hive Mind' by Maisie Cousins
'The Hive Mind' photographed by Maisie Cousins
'The Hive Mind' by Maisie Cousins

For Pattie Gonia, a leading queer environmentalist, drag is not confined to four walls and a stage. Feeling safest in nature, they are combining environmental activism with the flamboyance of their art — organizing hiking trails and spreading awareness. Pattie Gonia believes we must first connect to nature so we can act on it from a place of love because we as people fight for what we love.

Another set of creatives advocating for the planet, the 21st century way, are the TikTokers. Gen Z creators have not only formed a Climate Justice subculture on the app but are making viral videos and setting trends that are kinder towards our planet.

'Queen P' photographed by Evan Benally Atwood
'Queen P' by Evan Benally Atwood
'Tiktok for the Planet' photographed by Hisham Akira Bharoocha
'Tiktok for the Planet' by Hisham Akira Bharoocha

In ‘Resting On and For the Earth’, one of the five cover stories, brontë velez interviews Tricia Hersey, founder of The Nap Ministry, on how resting is the most fundamental form of resistance against capitalism and colonization. In a world that has normalized hustle culture and exhausting oneself out, sleep is both a protest and a pilgrimage — something that should be the foundation to build a new world on. Looking at the issue from a black lens, a community that has been made to feel guilty for resting, Tricia also outlines how sleeping is a way of processing trauma.

'Resting on and for the Earth' photographed by Denisse Ariana Perez
'Resting on and for the Earth' by Denisse Ariana Perez
'Resting on and for the Earth' photographed by Denisse Ariana Perez
'Resting on and for the Earth' by Denisse Ariana Perez

Collaboration is fundamentally a political statement, people coming together and falling into a pattern is representative of what makes us human and in ‘On a Move’ Mike Africa Jr., going back thirty-six years, recounts the experience of his grandfather John Africa, who was persecuted for pursuing liberation in Philadelphia.

'On a Move' photographed by Joseph McLaughlin
'On a Move' photographed by Joseph McLaughlin

From mother trees nurturing entire forests in ‘Family Trees’ to mushrooms emerging as the real protagonists in the story of life on earth in ‘Mythos and Mychology‘, Atmos explores every possible facet of collaboration, proving that working together is not a human-made concept and we are not the only social beings inheriting this planet.

'Family Trees' photographed by Colin Dodgson
'Family Trees' by Colin Dodgson
'Jungle Retreat' photographed by Bharat Sikka
'Jungle Retreat' by Bharat Sikka

To say that Atmos’ use of photography is brilliant would be an understatement; the lens convey what sentences cannot. In photo stories, like ‘Mirror Image’ by photographer Ben Toms, art imitates life, and in ‘Congregation’ by Osamu Yokonami, a group of schoolgirls are more relevant than ever in a post-pandemic world.

'Congregation' photographed by Osamu Yokonami
'Congregation' by Osamu Yokonami
'Congregation' photographed by Osamu Yokonami
'Congregation' by Osamu Yokonami

In ‘On Board’, Sackitey Tesa photographs the all-girls skate group in Ghana, The Skate Gal Club, formed to empower women to participate in extreme sports. From Chacahua, a strip on the coast from Acapulco to Oaxaca, where a diverse community lives together harmoniously, to La Perla on the island of Puerto Rico, a place born out of resistance where the people move forward as a collective, with Atmos in your hands, you slip from one world to the next, from one place to another with the flip of a page.

'Mirror Image' photographed by Ben Toms
'Mirror Image' by Ben Toms
'Bonding Act' photographed by Pierre Debusschere
'Bonding Act' by Pierre Debusschere

Collaboration is as much about working together harmoniously as it is about healing the self and the earth. From tracing the roots of natural medicine with Ahmed Saleh, an intuitive doctor deep in the Egyptian desert, to the many practices of elemental self-healing preached in Indian Ayurveda and the need for Chinese medicine to be accessible, Atmos also highlights the many ways humans have integrated nature and culture as a medicine that not only repairs but also connects us to the deeper sediments of our beings.

'Bedouin Herbalism' photographed by Nikki McClarron
'Bedouin Herbalism' by Nikki McClarron
'Ayurveda: Wisdom of the Elements' photographed by Vivek Vadoliya
'Ayurveda: Wisdom of the Elements' by Vivek Vadoliya

Atmos Vol. 5 is a gorgeous portrait of nature in collaboration, caught both candidly and in performance. Asking the right questions is never easy and finding the right answers even more so — this year’s Venice Architecture Biennale, for instance, is asking the world, especially one that builds and aids in the structuring of culture and community, “How will we live together?” Given how far we as humanity have come and where we are headed, the question has never been more important. Atmos opens up similar conversations and it also comes as a sharp warning on how we are slowly moving out and against the natural trajectory of being an integrated community, threatening to damage the organic workings of our planet. But we can choose to focus on all the ways we can work together, as a hive, in supreme connection to the world around us.

'The Night Shift' photographed by Gareth McConell
'The Night Shift' by Gareth McConell
'Mythos and Mycology' photographed by Alexandra Von Fuerst
'Mythos and Mycology' by Alexandra Von Fuerst

When we sit down with Atmos, we are sitting down with a piece of the world that surrounds us, live on the page in pictures and in words, conveying simply yet so beautifully the fact that we are not alone. The magazine, just like the very concept of collaboration, at its core is timeless. With each new issue, and we’re told the next one is just round the corner, the previous editions age into classics, making grabbing yourself a copy never too late or not relevant. You can order Hive and all previous Atmos editions, here.

'The Altered Destiny' photographed by Daniel Obasi
'The Altered Destiny' by Daniel Obasi
'The Altered Destiny' photographed by Daniel Obasi
'The Altered Destiny' by Daniel Obasi
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