Drawing the Polar Regions

Research output: Other contribution


Ice Mirage 17 January – 28th March 2015, Galerie bastian, Am Kupfergraben 10, 10117 Berlin, Germany http://www.galeriebastian.com/EN/emma_stibbon_ice_mirage.html Drawing the Polar Regions 11 June – 5th September 2015, Polar Museum, Lensfield Road, Cambridge http://www.spri.cam.ac.uk/museum/ These solo exhibitions are the outcome of two recent periods of fieldwork in the High Arctic (supported by the ArcticCircle.org and the Arts Council England £4,754) and the Antarctic Peninsula (supported by the Scott Polar Research Institute Friends and HMS Protector). The work forms an integral part of Stibbon’s ongoing research exploring the cycle of glacial formations and their impact on the physical landscape and the imagination. These drawings are part of a body of new research triggered by recent scientific assessments that show increasing instability in the Polar ice sheets, confirming that the vulnerability of the Polar Regions will have profound effects upon our global environment. Stibbon’s large-scale drawings (including works of 1.51m x 3m), systematically investigate the dynamics of landscape, the central aim being to capture the fragility of a pristine environment and a landscape under environmental threat. The grand scale of the works reflect mid-eighteenth century definitions of the sublime and in ecological terms the work seeks to convey a sense of flux in the persistent flow from glacier to iceberg and the presence of ever-changing sculptural forms. Direct drawing and mark-making become the visual counterparts to the scientific analyses undertaken in this region. Stibbon’s methodical gathering of visual material was an integral part of the interdisciplinary nature of the science/art collaboration in the project. Ice Mirage has been reviewed in the Berlin Culture Magazine Zitty Berlin Issue 4 18 Feb 2015* and an interview between Stibbon and the writer Nancy Campbell is published online http://www.theislandreview.com/emma-stibbon. Stibbon exhibited two new works in this series, an outsize drawing ‘Tabular Berg’ and ‘Berg Antarctica’ in the group exhibition Drawn to the Real at the Alan Cristea Gallery, London. 12th June – 19th July 2014. An accompanying publication Drawn to the Real was published by Alan Cristea Gallery, London ISBN 978-0-9575085-5-2. Stibbon was a panel member in the discussion Drawn to the Real chaired by Charlotte Mullins with artists Jane Dixon, Marie Harnett, Richard Forster, at the Alan Cristea Gallery, London on 1st June 2014. This Polar research builds on three earlier related solo exhibitions in 2006, supported by the Arts Council of England (£5k) and a private sponsor (£6k) and were widely reviewed in Germany. These works charted a journey made by Stibbon through the Antarctic Convergence to the ice landscape of the peninsular. Reflecting environmental concerns, the Bristol exhibition was complemented by a panel discussion involving the artist, Emma Stibbon, research collaborator Dr Giles Brown (School of Geographical Sciences, University of Bristol), Professor Vala Ragnarsdottir (Professor of Environmental Sustainability, University of Bristol) and Sandie Macrae (Director, R O O M, Bristol).
Original languageEnglish
PublisherUpstairs, Berlin, Zimmerstrasse
Place of PublicationBerlin, Germany
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Art
  • Science


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