The Cyanos

May 8, 2018




“We at first may see only a world in our own image, but appears next is a swarm of “talented” and vibrant materialities..”

Our name is Cyano. We live in water and moist soil. We are photosynthetic, manufacturing our own food. We are very small, unicellular, though often we grow in colonies large enough to be see by you. We have been around for a long time. Our forefathers are the oldest known fossils, more than 3.5 billion years old. So it may surprise you then to know that we are still around; one of the largest and most important of our kind on earth.

We have been tremendously important in shaping the course of evolution and ecological change throughout earth’s history. The oxygen atmosphere that you depend on was generated by us between 4000 – 570 millions years ago. Before that time, the atmosphere had a very different chemistry, unsuitable for life as you know it today.

We also contributed to the origin of plants. The chloroplast with which plants make food for themselves is actually us, living within the plant’s cells. A long time ago we began to take up residence within certain eukaryote cells, making food for the eukaryote host in return for a home.

We enjoy the sun, then our numbers grow and we shine bright green on a sunny day, but don’t be fooled by out beauty. We can be dangerous, toxic. When we bloom we can produce cyanotoxins, toxins that can poison and even kill animals and humans. You might have had shellfish poisoning?

We have been around for a long time. We have maid our mark. But we are most likely not done yet. We will be around for a long time to come, longer than you.




Sindri Sigurðsson


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