Chasing Icebergs: Art and a Disappearing Landscape
February 18, 2023 @ 11:00 am - 3:30 pm$10
The exhibition, highlights Frederic Church’s iceberg sketches from his 1859 intrepid voyage to the Arctic. Risking his life, Church chartered a ship to the treacherous waters surrounding Newfoundland and Labrador – an area known as Iceberg Alley – on a mission that made him the first American artist to explore the region for the purpose of painting icebergs, a landmark event in the history of art. The exhibit includes photographs and historic texts which Church collected about icebergs and Arctic exploration, as well as the work of four contemporary artists who contemplate the wonder of fragility of Earth’s polar environments. Just as Church used his major work, The Icebergs, to reflect on the major crisis of his time – the Civil War – many contemporary artists reflect on the sublime power of Arctic ice and use it to uncover the global crisis of our time – climate change and the immediate danger it poses to our future and that of these imperiled wonders of nature.
Joining Frederic Church’s works in this exhibition are artworks and writings by his companions and fellow explorers Dr. Isaac Israel Hayes and Louis L. Noble, as well as photographs from William Bradford’s Greenland expedition in 1869. Many of the historic works come from Church’s collection at Olana and illuminate Church’s long fascination with the Arctic region. The exhibition delves into the history of exploration, artistic representation of the Arctic, and the Indigenous peoples of Newfoundland and Labrador – such as the Mi’kmaq, Innu, and Inuit.
The exhibition is open to the public by reservation, Friday – Sunday, through March 26, 2023.