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Anorak | Nowhere Island Brings-Tows The Artic To Britain

Nowhere Island Brings-Tows The Artic To Britain

by | 24th, October 2009

_46590705_hartleyNOWHERE ISLAND is the work of artist Alex Hartley. To raise awareness over climate change, Mr Hartley will be taking rocks from an island in the Svalbard archipelago north of Norway by barge to Weymouth for the Olympic sailing in 2012.

The rocks will be put on a floating football pitch-sized platform to create Nowhere Island. No Where Island will then be towed by tug boat around the South West coast to Bristol.

It’s all part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad. And Mr Hartley fought off other artists to win the £500,000 commission from London 2012 and the Arts Council.

Mr Hartley says the environmental cost of towing the island was outweighed by the “poetry of the project“.

So as not to pollute his vision, we give you the story in full.

Meanwhile Old Mr Anorak is making his own poetry to with his new Lear Jet:

nowhereisland is the winning Artists Taking the Lead project for the South West of England. As part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, nowhereisland will arrive in July 2012.

Artist Alex Hartley will bring an arctic island to the South West of England. He discovered the island in the High Arctic archipelago of Svalbard as part of the 2004 Cape Farewell expedition. The island was revealed from within the melting ice of a retreating glacier and Alex was the first human to ever stand on it. It is about the size of a football pitch, consisting of rubble and moraine around a small amount of bedrock. The Norwegian Polar Institute has recognised the island and it is named and included on all maps and charts subsequent to its discovery.

A portion of the island will be transported to South West England through international waters and whilst en route it will apply for micronation status. The new ‘micronation’, nowhereisland, will navigate the entire 702 miles of coast around the South West region, visiting its ports and harbours, accompanied by a travelling embassy support vehicle. nowhereisland will embark from Poole and arrive in Weymouth and Portland for the duration of the Olympic sailing events, before continuing west and ending its journey in Bristol, the same port from which John Cabot set sail to search for the fabled North West passage.

This artwork seeks to poetically explore issues of climate change, land ownership, national identity and the exploitation of the earth’s remaining natural resources.

Citizens will be sought to participate in all aspects of this virtual new nation.
At the end of the island’s journey around the south west coast, the winning entrant of an international architectural competition to design a small island habitation will be chosen. The small building will be erected on the island for Alex Hartley to live in.

Some time after the end of the Olympic year, nowhereisland will return to the Arctic to be made whole again.

Your thoughts in the form of a rock to the Arts Council…



Posted: 24th, October 2009 | In: Reviews Comments (10) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink