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Updated: Jan 8

'The Big Bang , our roots ': A Reflection

The Big Bang, a cosmic phenomenon that occurred about 13.8 billion years ago, is considered the starting point of our universe. It was an explosion of unimaginable energy that led to the formation of stars, planets and everything we know in the universe today. Humanity, a relatively recent addition to this cosmic scene, has impacted Earth in many ways.

Rae Mertens ' work entitled 'The Big Bang, Our Roots …'.

Rita Rae Mertens makes the link to primates, the ancestors of today's humans, but also to the 12 apostles. People are depicted through theatrical masks as we know them from the classical theater of around five hundred BC. Inspired by Dionysos, god of dance, music, drink and art, actors fell into an ecstasy, which gave them the power to speak to the Athenian people as gods and heroes. Playwrights were the teachers of the people. Through the mythological stories they discussed current issues that urgently needed to be addressed at the time.

Rita Rae Mertens represents this by heading towards visible destruction. However, the artist does not conform to the boundaries of representation.

Her sculptures lie in front of the artwork, tangible fragments of culture and destruction. The debris is scattered throughout the exhibition space. According to Rita Rae Mertens' philosophy , art does not have to be a neat representation that is neatly hung between four frames in a frame in the Prado . Art can bring about cultural changes. Thinking and acting change.

After all, what makes the human species unique is our capacity for consciousness and reflection. We are able to understand the consequences of our actions and make choices that affect our future. In light of the threat of climate change, it is vital that we take this responsibility seriously and take action to limit the damage. Will humanity actually destroy the Earth? The answer depends on the choices we make. If we continue to deplete natural resources, pollute the environment and ignore the consequences of our actions, we risk irreparably destroying the earth we live on.

On the other hand, we also have the opportunity to create positive change. We can invest in clean energy sources, rethink our consumption patterns and work together globally to tackle climate change. It is up to us 'humans' to decide which path we choose.


The Big Bang is one of the most fundamental events in the history of the universe. It marked the beginning of space and time as we understand them and led to the formation of galaxies, stars and planets. It was an unimaginably powerful explosion that laid the foundation for the evolution of the universe as we know it today. However, the Big Bang was not the end of the story; rather, it was the beginning of an incredibly long process of cosmic evolution.

The human species, which arrived on the scene only a few hundred thousand years ago, has influenced planet Earth in many ways. Over history, we have significantly increased our ability to change and control the natural world. We've built cities, developed farming technology, and pushed the boundaries of science and knowledge. But with this growing influence on our environment also comes greater responsibility.

One of the most pressing issues facing humanity today is climate change . Human activities, especially greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels, have dramatically affected the planet's climate. These human-induced changes in climate have led to more extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and the threat of ecosystems and species becoming endangered.

The relationship between the Big Bang and human influence on Earth becomes clear when we consider the scale of time and space. The Big Bang happened billions of years ago, while human history is just a fraction of a second in the cosmic clock. Yet our actions in that short period of time have had a significant impact on this planet.

In short: “The Big Bang, our roots …” marks the beginning of our universe with the Big Bang, and humanity is a relatively recent addition to this cosmic story. However, our influence on the Earth has grown significantly, and we now face the challenge of using this power responsibly. The question of whether humanity will destroy the Earth depends on the choices we make. It is up to us to decide which path we want to follow and what legacy we want to leave for future generations. The Big Bang was the beginning, but our future is in our own hands.

©️Domenico Mertens – October 2023

Spanish translation Manuel Martinez - October 2023

Translation in English Rita Rae Mertens – October 2023

Rita Rae Mertens (1955)

Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp Belgium


Digital work 'The Big Bang, our roots ' 150 x 150 cm

(on Fine Art paper – Methacrylate 2 mm, matt)

Framed sculptures 40 x 40 cm

Painting 'The Big Bang, our roots ' 135 x 137 cm – not on exhibition

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