Bodies are part of the environments that surround them, through their ongoing engagement with the land, material resources and the different beings that dwell in the landscape.
The body has often been viewed as the world in microcosm. Yet bodies and landscapes are constantly transforming each other. Landscapes are created by the humans that excavate them, mine them, plough them, build upon and move through them.
Material objects facilitate what a body can do and alter the ways that it engages with the environment. Technologies such as ice skates, horse harnesses and paddles change the way the body moves through and experiences the landscape.
Intimate relations between human and animal worlds are demonstrated by the transformations between bodies as depicted on totem poles from the Northwest Coast of Canada. Hunting involves a detailed knowledge of the landscape, expressed in the way the hunter acts and the weapons he uses. A Mesolithic headdress made from the skull and antlers of a deer emphasises the links between hunters and their prey.
People also create relationships with places and with each other by gathering, exchanging and wearing materials drawn from particular sites in the landscape.