Exhibition and Talk: Art and Antarctica

3 August 2017 - 6:00pm to 19 August 2017 - 11:45am
99 Loop Gallery, 99 Loop Street, Cape Town
Contact Email: 

UCT’s Oceanography department recently participated in an Interdisciplinary Research Cruise to the Marginal Ice Zone of Antarctica. On board was artist and African Climate & Development Initiative communications coordinator Katrine Claassens who is having an exhibition of paintings based on the cruise.

There will be a talk with Associate Professor, Marcello Vichi, director of the Marine Research Institute on the 5th August (Saturday) from 10:30- 11:30 climate research in Antarctica and a walkabout with the artist. The exhibition opens on the evening of the 3rd August and closes on the 19th August.

An abstract of Marcello's talk:

The Southern Ocean is a remote region of the global ocean that is seasonally covered by a vast surface of sea ice. In contrast to the Arctic Ocean sea ice, which is steadily decreasing in concentration and volume as a consequence of human-driven climatic changes, sea ice in the southern hemisphere has shown an elusive behaviour.

Scientific research is therefore the only way to widen our knowledge on the complexity of this environment and its linkages to the Earth climate. The South African research community has always been at the forefront of Southern Ocean research. The recent efforts to provide a picture of the winter conditions in unexplored regions through dedicated cruises sponsored by the Department of Science and Technology and facilitated by the Department of Environmental Affairs will further strengthen the role of South African ocean sciences in this endeavour.

Katrine Claassens is a painter from Cape Town, South Africa. Her last solo show at 99 Loop looked at tranquilizing effect of the internet, especially memes. She has an honours in Visual Art and a master’s in Climate Change. Using melted sea-ice collected on the on the artist’s recent accompaniment on a scientific cruise to Antarctic waters, water-colour and oil, Claassens’ paintings create space to remember, to mourn, and most importantly, to empathize with our melting world. Drawing on her work, research and experiences both in the Arctic and Antarctic regions, the works touch upon humanity’s fingerprints at furthest, wildest reaches of the earth.