for an artist's lab on sea

Were you ever told about the quality of the light, up there in the north? Have you heard any description of what noise ices make when they bang together in the fog? And the color of an upside down iceberg, how does it look like?

we’ll set sail on the northern seas and immerse ourselves in this polar atmosphere for one month, and intend to work and document this ever changing areas, as well as drawing attention on northern communities living near the poles. There’s a certain amount of scientific data on climate change, ice melting, evolution of polar fauna, but only little artistic tracks are organized.

The artistic residency is organized by the association Maremotrice, whose intention is to confront different perceptions on polar environnement. Their boat serves as housing, workshop and transport use. It offers high possibilities of exploring areas difficult to reach. The idea is to travel with light logistic and cheap means . The artists involved in the project will afterwards work on the collected data in their own studios.

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Svalbard expedition, from 74° à 81° North

Svalbard is a group of islands located in the arctic ocean, half way between norway and the north pole. there’re two main islands, spitsbergen and nordaustlandet. Spitsbergen hosts the northest permanent community (abt 2500 inhabitants). its also host scientific researches bases from different countries as well as deserted soviets mines and is home to 1’500 polar bears. 60% of the land is covered by ice, and the sea also turns into ice every winter.

Inspired by an extreme environment while living in a daily promiscuity, six in an enclosed space of 15m2, is the starting point of the experiment. But the question of the relationship of human beings to their environment will go beyond the sailboat. The team intends to meet this mix of population and reflect on the cultural identity of islanders whose roots are elsewhere.

A pdf describing the artists’ projects is available on the association site:

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we need your help

Maremotrice wants to offer the cheapest possible expedition to the artists, but a 15m boat has its operating costs. Total budget for four artists and two sailors is about CHF 22’400.

Expenses include:

  • boat spreading costs
  • port taxes
  • insurances (compulsory)
  • defense means against polar bears (individual rockets, ammunition for the two rifles)
  • salary for one skipper
  • fuel and heating combustible
  • food for one month/6 people
  • material for satellite communication
  • fund for unexpected expenses and broken materials