The Polar Project

Clear Skies
Clear Skies

Day 19; February 10, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: Average Daily Wind Speed: Feels Like: I have been awake now for over thirty hours, having just completed my light recording piece. As exhausted as I am, I deeply enjoy the space that I traverse during these long periods of documenting light. Watching, diligently, the subtle shifts in color and intensity—I am ever entranced by the grace of natural phenomena. In the late afternoon, the feeder flight arrived to take Alfons to NOVO, where he will catch his flight back to Cape Town. We all went down to send him off, waving goodbye as he boarded the…read more »

Light Recordings
Light Recordings

Day 18; February 9, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 9.86˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 18.12 mph Feels Like: -17.32˚ F Today was quiet, and rather wonderfully subdued. I spent a good deal of the afternoon gazing out the window of my studio, meditating on the changing luminosity across the horizon to the south. The mountains appeared and disappeared behind think low clouds, and it was snowing heavily in the distance, leaving the farthest mountains obscured completely in gray opacity. As the sun aligned itself on the horizon, there was another intense sun pillar. Rising like a flame above the rocks on the edge of our…read more »

Resonance
Resonance

Day 17; February 8, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 13.64˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 18.12 mph Feels Like: -13.54˚ F This morning I awoke quite early to find that the cold had seeped into my bones overnight. Just before midnight last night I had walked down to ICEPAC, intent on sleeping the night in our field camp. The sun was below the horizon, but as I ambled across the snow to our field camp, there was still enough light to guide my way. The night was clear, and the deep evening colors had seeped into the ice—everything was indigo and pink, and the softness of…read more »

What is White
What is White

Day 16; February 7, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 17.78˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 13.42 mph Feels Like: -2.35˚ F A colour is never merely a colour, but the colour of a certain object… -Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Phenomenology of Perception Here in Antarctica there is snow and ice virtually everywhere, a fact that may at first seem elementary but upon deeper reflection is infinitely complex. The impressive quantity of these natural crystalline elements extends as much vertically as they do horizontally, permeating the air and cloaking the land. The depth of the ice beneath my feet approaches 30 feet, with the thickest ice on the continent…read more »

Grunehogna
Grunehogna

Day 15; February 6, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 18.14˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 11.63 mph Feels Like: 0.69˚ F It was half an hour before lunch when I finally awoke. On my way to the dinning room to find some caffeine, my stomach clearly announcing it was ready for a meal, I ran into the helicopter pilots of Titan 1, Neall and his son and co-pilot, Kevin. Wishing me a good afternoon, they told me that we would be flying to Grunehogna in 30 minutes and to gather my things. With my first cup of coffee sloshing over the rim of my mug as…read more »

Take Over
Take Over

Day 14; February 5, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 19.4˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 22.15 mph Feels Like: -13.82˚ F My alarm sounded, startling me out of a deep sleep. The foreign noise alerted me to the fact that it was 6:30am and time to get ready for our journey to Grunahogna—the gorgeous rock mountain 40 kilometers away that I see from my studio window here. I was elated to be going on a new adventure. Travel within Antarctica is never without a particular mission, due to the incredible expense. Given the $9000 per hour flight cost while airborne, our scheduled helicopter flight to Grunahogna…read more »

Coordinates
Coordinates

Day 13; February 4, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 13.28˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 20.80 mph Feels Like: -17.92˚ F My exact GPS coordinates here in Antarctica are 71 ° 40.433’ S 002 ° 48.700’ W… want to see where I am? Google Earth has satellite images of the SANAE IV Research Base including the nunataks and glaciers surrounding the area. Ross Hofmeyr added names and points of interest to the images, so you can see where everything is. Click HERE to download the KMZ file you’ll need to get here. Once you’ve downloaded this file, you’ll need to upload it or add it to…read more »

NEWS: Interview from Antarctica
NEWS: Interview from Antarctica

My friend James Westwater interviewed me this week about my projects here in Antarctica, and has posted our conversation in a four-part series on his blog. Here are the links: 1. Erika Blumenfeld on The Polar Project 2. Erika Blumenfeld Interview Part II 3. Erika Blumenfeld Interview Part III 4. Erika Blumenfeld Interview Part IV…read more »

On the Horizon
On the Horizon

Day 12; February 3, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 15.08˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 12.30 mph Feels Like: -3.37˚ F Last night was the opening of ICEPAC, the Bienal del Fin del Mundo’s Antarctic venue. The whole base gathered down at the remote mobile base for music, video art, and dancing to celebrate this cultural center in Antarctica as an event and a place. We had spent the whole day preparing for the opening, and organizing various components of the exhibition. After dinner we all gathered in the media room for Alfons Hug’s lecture about the exhibition here in Antarctica as well as its other…read more »

Bienal del Fin del Mundo

Day 11; February 2, 2009; Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica Average Daily Temperature: 17.24˚ F Average Daily Wind Speed: 16.78 mph Feels Like: -7.93˚ F FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Announcing the opening of the Antarctic portion of Intemperie: the 2nd Bienal del Fin del Mundo, a collection of site specific installations produced during the project ITASC at SANAE IV (71 ° 40.433’ S 002 ° 48.700’ W) and ICEPAC (71 ° 40.433’ S 002 ° 48.700’ W) in Vesleskaervet, Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. The exhibition focuses on weather, climate and Antarctica. The main venue of the Bienal del Fin del Mundo is in Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, April 23 –…read more »