The Art of Arson

Fire is undoubtedly fascinating to us at some stage of our lives, a primeval attraction perhaps. Luckily, the curiosity usually wanes with age and once we come to understand the dangers of the flames. However, some people seem to have a lifelong attraction to fires and an almost irresistible impulse to set them. This behavior is called pyromania; many controversies, myths and misconceptions surround it, and psychiatrists do not always agree about whether it truly is a disease.

Pyromania is rife here in Mallorca this year, or so it would appear. More than 100 incendios (forest fires) had been reported by the end of August. This year’s long period without rain must have rendered Mallorca’s wooded areas particularly prone to fires, but there also seems to be a larger than usual proportion of intentionally laid fires. Arson and pyromania are attributed to the majority of recent forest fires. In Capdepera, a young female was arrested last week and charged with intentionally causing four small-scale forest fires. In Sóller, a car was set on fire only yesterday.

A young Felanitx artist has made the remnants of recent forest fires in the Puig de Sant Salvador area the subject of a captivating art installation. Her name is Mariona Obrador Ramis. Her installation was shown during the Nitxdelart in Felanitx at the Espai d’Art Miquela Nicolau gallery and will continue to be shown there until the end of September.

Other Nitdelart events were recently held in Campos and in s’Arraco; Palma will hold its Nit de l’Art in two weeks time, on Thursday, September 20th. Whether fire or forest fires will be a subject matter there, we will simply have to wait and see.

The photo was taken in Felanitx, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: August 26th, 2012. The time was 12:50:49.

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