This is a blog of ongoing projects starting with: 1) Antarctica -Dec. 2006 - February 2007 2) Work made from the experience 2008 3) Nevada Feb. - Oct. 2008

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Everything nothing
Hand written text in ink on an inkjet print on artists' paper.
88 x 78 cm.

The ice sheets of Antarctica are an endless expanse of nothingness. Its the kind of intense nothingness that both fills and empties the mind. Enfolded within the ice and revealed by the echograms and ice cores are 900,000 years of the history of the Earth. These waves of land and ice are like a heartbeat of the Earth.


Explorers at the Edge of the Void + detail
Hand written text in ink on an inkjet print on artists paper. 106 x 235 cm.

Not long after I returned from Antarctica, my wife and i were invited to CERN to see the new Hadron Collider under construction. The experiment which is due to take place this year, will attempt to prove the Theory of everything, which will mimic the Big Bang and give us an insight into the origins of the Universe. It will also bring to a conclusion nearly a century of research into the nature and origins of matter;  the strange Zen-like world of particle physics, which places man and his thinking as part of the equation rather than outside of it.
This is something which has always intrigued me and it struck me that this century of research into the smallest and largest universes, went hand in hand with the exploration of the last uncharted place on Earth; Antarctica.
Einstein, plank, Scott, Shackleton and Amundsen were all contemporary explorers. They were looking at absolute matter and absolute mind. Nature was in all senses, a blank white canvas of exploration. It is ironic that instead of seeing the truth of what it means to be a part of nature, society has continued to dominate it, often using science, and the result is the devastating climate change we see today and which is so evident in the melting glaciers of the Antarctic Peninsular.
This work reads from the bottom up, starting with a mix of Antarctic explorers and Nobel Laureate physicists, splitting into two distinct groups divided by 'the theory of everything' and 'everything nothing'. It culminates in the equations which go to make up the four forces of Nature that constitute the Theory of Everything: Quantum Chromodynamics, Lagrangian, Electromagnetic and Quantum Mechanics. If the experiment works we will see the particle tracks of the Higgs Bosun theory; what Leon Lederman called 'The God Particle'.


Under The Ice, Over the Unknown, detail Flight G23
pencil and Ink on an inkjet print on artists' paper. 206 x 87 cm.


Albatross I - Blue Crayon and pencil on artists' paper. 75 x 75 cm.
Albatross II - Inkjet print and pencil on artists' paper. 103 x 103 cm

Over the two months I was in Antarctica, the Met Officer at Rothera gave me daily, a satellite image, a pressure image and an image of winds. Here I have combined the wind diagrams over one day with the flight of an Albatross around Antarctica over 18 months. the bird is tracing the 55d latitude, which is where the warm currents are meeting the cold circumpolar  current and so giving rise to a vast array of marine life. The albatross is a bird of the wind, skimming the waves in search of food.


Double echo - Inkjet print - 134 x 114 cm
This echogram from East Antarctica, has been superimposed with an echocardiogram of the pilots heart beat. Both use a similar imaging technique.

Lake Concordia + (detail) - Biro on an inkjet print on vinyl. 130 x 114 cm.
The ice here is over 4 km. deep and the underlying Earth is hot, so a lake has formed. each line of biro represents over a hundred years in time and accumulation. Antarctica has been covered with ice for around 900,ooo years, which is about the time man has been on the Earth.


Under Carrara Nunatac - Inkjet print, 74 x 89 cm.
Under Sky Blu - Inkjet print, 72 x 150 cm.
This is from an echogram, which is a radar image bounced through the ice from an aircraft and imaged in a computer. The image itself can be 20 m. or so long. Here, I have taken sections under Sky Blu, from Flight G23 and layered them in Photoshop to produce what is a fictitious landscape under the ice, which does however rely on concrete data.


Life in the Presence of Death - a gene sequence from a proto-bacteria found in the soil of the Ellsworth mountains. Antarctic earth on artists' paper. 131 x 100 cm.


Wind Vortices, Embossed paper, 72 x 65 cm.
Antarctic Winds, 24 & 25 January 2006 - Inkjet print on artists paper with pencil. 75 x 73 cm.
Antarctic Winds, 27 & 28 January 2006 - Inkjet print on artists paper with permanent ink on transparent film superimposed. 75 x 73 cm.