In the face of a warming world, the Arctic landscape is changing, as a new interactive exhibit at London's Maritime Museum illustrates.
David Sillito reports for BBC News that 'High Arctic' was created after members of the United Visual Artists group traveled to the region, and returned wanting to show the challenges confronting the Arctic.
According to WIRED, the voyagers spent three weeks sailing aboard a schooner alongside climate scientists who took measurements of the sea temperature, salinity of the water, and conducted other tests.
Matt Clark told the online magazine, “Walking across these glaciers was the most magical moment for me. When I was standing on one of them, one of the scientists said: ‘In 50 years’ time, these won’t be here.’ It is this beauty, scale and fragility — and a sense of loss — which we are trying to embody in this exhibition.”
According to the Associated Press, a report by the international Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program recently found that the Arctic region's ice is melting faster than the U.N. projected, with Arctic temperatures in the past six years the highest since measurements began.
The crucial element of the exhibition is the fact that visitors use ultraviolet flashlights to navigate their way through the darkened space. These flashlights activate projections in what would be the torch’s beam. As they weave their way through the ice islands, there are five open “pool” areas for visitors to explore with their flashlights.
London Evening Standard reviewed the exhibit, writing, "Ambient noise evokes the frozen Arctic tundra, and voices read poems by Nick Drake, creating an elegiac, even ghostly aural collage reflecting the Arctic's history and uncertain future."
WATCH a tour of the exhibit: