Adele Jackson New Zealand
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I’m currently exploring the connection between the sun, Antarctica, and human activity over the austral summer season. I describe myself as an environmental artist. I’m interested in the interrelationships between people, places, culture and nature. In 2017, I moved from the UK to New Zealand to study for a PhD exploring 'the value of artists working in Antarctica'.

At times my work is sculptural, at others it is photographic; sometimes I create work using collections of found objects; often I engage directly with place and nature in ways that could be described as ‘land art’; and frequently ‘socially engaged practice’ would be a fitting description. I am increasingly interested in producing art in which nature and natural forces are part of the creative process.

In my current project, ‘Antarctic Sun Lines’, the sun and the tilted rotation of the Earth are active in creating the artwork. The project is an international collaboration using solargraphy to explore human connections with Antarctica and the natural world. The ‘Antarctic Sun Lines’ solargraphs specifically record the narrow window of time when human and biospheric activity in Antarctica are at their peak. The images visually locate Antarctica in relation to the dynamics of the solar system and the natural forces that create and sustain life on Earth.

I first created solargraphs in 2015 whilst working for the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust as Base Leader of a historic site and museum in the Antarctic Peninsula region. Last year, with the support of 12 Antarctic organisations, the project grew into a collaboration between the Antarctic gateway cities of Cape Town, South Africa; Christchurch, New Zealand; Hobart, Australia; Punta Arenas, Chile; and Ushuaia, Argentina. 24 people across 4 continents were involved in setting up pinhole cameras in each of the cities and at sites in the East and West of Antarctica. I set up cameras in Ushuaia, Christchurch and the Antarctic Peninsula, and supplied participants with cameras and installation instructions for all the other locations. Participants installed the cameras, and returned them at the end of the season. I then edited and produced all the final images. In this project the artwork is co-produced; it can only be created through working together. There’s a collective sense of investment in the process and outcomes of the project.

Other Antarctic-related work includes, ‘Leave only Footprints’, a series of photographs documenting land artworks exploring human impacts of polar tourism; and ‘Antarctic Circles’, a series of sculptural books exploring Antarctica’s natural environment, science and heritage in the context of the 1959 Antarctic Treaty and subsequent environmental protocols.

I consider my role in co-founding and leading ‘Art Hike’ to be part of my creative practice. Established in 2007, ‘Art Hike’ is an open invitation to artists and creatively minded people to take part in a day-long hike. The hikes are mostly in open countryside and occasionally in urban settings. People come together to walk and talk. There is also an option to participate in a creative activity that responds to the environment. The creative practice is in the act of bringing people together to share an experience of place and in providing a space for connections and ideas to form.

In earlier work, I have preserved memories of ‘place’ and identity’ through collections of natural and man-made objects cast in resin. What started out as a personal way to respond to place, grew into a meaningful way to engage people in sharing and preserving personal memories and stories within community, health and education projects.

Artwork

Antarctic Sun Lines - Anemometer Tower, Goudier Island, Antarctic Peninsula, Solargraph, 2015/16

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Antarctic Sun Lines - Mario Zucchelli Station, Victoria Land, Antarctica, Solargraph, 2017/18

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Antarctic Sun Lines - Institute of Marine and Antarctic Studies, Hobart, Solargraph, 2017/18

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Antarctic Sun Lines - Scott's Hut, Cape Evans, Ross Island, Antarctica, Solargraph, 2017/18

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Leave Only Footprints, Deception Island, South Shetland Islands, Antarctica, Land art photograph, 2014

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Leave Only Footprints, Paradise Bay, Antarctic Peninsula, Land art photograph, 2014

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Ice Crystal Library, Sculptural book, 2014

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Antarctic Colour Swatch, Sculptural book, 2014

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Antarctic Message Cylinders, Sculptural book, 2014

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Unsere Strassen - I found this in the street, Found objects cast in resin, 2008

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Art Hike, Socially engaged and land art, 2007-2018

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Shell Island, Wales, Found objects cast in resin, 2010

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Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, Found objects cast in resin, 2010

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Isle of Harris, Outer Hebrides, Scotland, Found objects cast in resin, 2006

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Positive Objects, Treasured objects cast in resin, 2010

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Previous projects

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Conference: POLAR2018

24/06/2018 to 29/06/2018

POLAR2018 was a joint international polar conference organised by the Scientific Committee for Antarctic Research and the International Arctic Science Committee. I gave presentations about my Antarctic Sun Lines solargraph project, and the developments in my PhD research, in which I’m exploring ‘the value of artists working in Antarctica’.

Davos Conference Centre, Davos, Switzerland Details

Public Talk: 10 Antarctic Changemakers

27/09/2018

Part of the 2018 Antarctic Season Opening series of public events. This was pecha-kucha style evening with 10 speakers who each presented on different aspects of contemporary activity in Antarctica. Topics included marine biology, ice science, inspiring the next generation of explorers, art and culture, logistics and international cooperation....

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La Vida Conference Centre, Christchurch, New Zealand Details

Public Talk: Looking South

28/03/2018

I gave a public talk charting the development of art in Antarctica as a backdrop for a closer look at my own work and that of contemporary Antarctic artists.

Christchurch Art Gallery / Te Puna o Waiwhetū, Christchurch, New Zealand Details

Exhibition: Antarctic Circles

06/08/2016 to 04/09/2016

A joint exhibition with artist, singer and songwriter, Lucy Bergman. An exhibition of photographs, sculptural books and music inspired by the Antarctic Treaty.

The Artworks, Halifax, West Yorkshire Details

Exhibition: Antarctic Circles

01/10/2015 to 31/10/2015

A joint exhibition with artist, singer and songwriter, Lucy Bergman. An exhibition of photographs, sculptural books and music inspired by the Antarctic Treaty.

The Barbican Centre Library, London Details

Residency: Unsere Strassen

03/05/2008 to 10/05/2008

Through participating in 'Open Engagement', a socially engaged arts practice conference in Canada, I met one of the founders of The Berlin Office and was invited to take up a residency there. The Berlin Office was an artist-owned and managed apartment in the Neukölln district of the Berlin, available for international artist residencies....

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The Berlin Office, Berlin, Germany Details

Conference: Open Engagement: Art after Aesthetic Distance

11/10/2007 to 13/10/2007

This was an international conference exploring ideas, relationships and connectivity within and through socially engaged arts practice. Social engagement was at the heart of the ethos, organisation and participation in the conference. Each participant was billeted with a member of the local community and left their host with a creative trace by...

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University of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada Details
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Artists’ booksPhotographyPrintmakingSculptureSocially Engaged PracticeText
Other keywords
EnvironmentIdentityMemoryParticipatorySite-specific