Art Programme

Art during the 2008 Disko Bay Expedition

During the Disko Bay expedition, our two science crews from the National Oceanography Centre and British Geological Survey were joined by over thirty artists. Joining the expedition were musicians, composers, poets, playwrights, theatre makers, artists, crafts people, architects, engineers, photographers and youth leaders.

We invite artists to this places of natural beauty and artistic inspiration to see first hand the effects of climate change. The invitation to join the expeditions is simple; come, explore, be inspired. Through witnessing the environment, taking part in stimulating discussion and observing and participating in scientific field research, we enable our voyagers to gain a real connection to the subject matter. Our ambition is that this experience will inspire all who journey to somehow respond to the Arctic and create work on their return.

During the expedition, we braved snow, ice and moving satellite dishes to send back daily blogs, images and videos to communicate our extraordinary journey to a global audience.

The 10 days we spent onboard were so densely packed it is going to take time for the full impact to register and be manifest in arts works and science. However, whilst onboard, some of the artists and musicians started and completed project in the Arctic.

These included new songs written by Robyn Hitchcock, KT Tunstall, Martha Wainwright and Vanessa Carlton. Feist and Shlomo collaborating to create a Cape Farewell choir (Arctic lofi). Recordings of the Glacier by Ryuichi Sakamoto and he is working with the geologists on a greater sound work based on their electronic data. Francesca Galeazzi performed her CO2 work. Tracy Rowledge constructed three series of ‘automated’ physical drawings, mapping the movement of the boat during the expedition. Michèle Noach found the Papaver Radicatum, Arctic poppies and collected them for her artwork with the Eden Project. Sophie Calle completed an artwork in the Arctic. Chris Wainwright completed a planned project and evolved and completed a totally new work. Sunand Prasad completed his Weather balloon project – no small feat! David Buckland projected video onto a glacier wall and re-filmed it. He also began a new work of 46 portraits, each to be accompanied by a chosen piece of text. Vicky Long recorded all for her radio program. Lemn Sissay performed a full-on work. Sam Collins filmed endlessly for proposed new artworks and collaborations. Rachel Holmes from Southbank Centre provided the Artistic Director, Jude Kelly, with a new script of ‘Paradise Lost’, abridged by Greg Mosse. Jude directed onboard the 32 ‘scenes’ with our crew of players and Peter Gilbert managed to capture the whole work in a very dense Sunday morning of filming.

Check the Disko Bay blog pages for more information about the journey and what people got up to.

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