The participants in the Antarctic Biennale international project have returned from their first art expedition to Antarctica. About 100 people from around the world – artists, architects, researchers, poets, writers, musicians and philosophers – set off on board a scientific research vessel, the Academic Sergei Vavilov, from the port of Ushuaia to the Antarctic Circle. During the artistic voyage, the participants traveled around 2,000 nautical miles (4,000 km), making over 12 landings on the shore of the Antarctic peninsula and on islands surrounding Earth’s most southerly continent. In total, on the continent’s territory, over 20 artistic projects were carried out, including performances, installations, exhibitions and sound-art experiments, as well as over 15 research sessions and philosophical discussions.
In this article, Clive Adams reviews their work and exhibition at the 2017 Venice Biennale. Clive is the founder director of the Centre for Contemporary Art and the Natural World, now based at Dartington in Devon. When working for Fabian Carlsson Gallery in London, he was involved in a project in which artist Andy Goldsworthy made the first sculpture at the North Pole in 1989