On Ice

First-ever Antarctic Biennale takes architecture on a South Pole cruise

International News
(Jeremy Goldberg / Unsplash)
(Jeremy Goldberg / Unsplash)

These days it seems there are tri- and biennials (or biennales, for all you sophisticates) popping up in cities all over: In addition to the venerable, alternating art and architecture biennials in Venice, in recent years architects and artists have convened in Shenzen and BejingLisbon, Berlin, and Oslo; Chicago and soon, Columbus, Indiana. Now, the enterprising tentacular reach of international artists and designers, aided by global warming, are moving their skip-a-year shows to a new locale—Antarctica.

The just-launched Antarctic Biennial, which artist-founder Alexander Ponomarev is calling an “international socio-cultural phenomenon,” will take 100 participants by vintage research vessel to the southernmost continent in March 2017 to mull over “shared spaces” like oceans, outer space, and of course, the antarctic. The idea has crossover appeal: In 2014 Ponomarev founded the Venice Architecture Biennale’s first supranational pavilion, featuring 15 architects. The pavilion returned the following year, for art, and again in 2016 for architecture with ANTARCTICA: RE-CYCLICAL, featuring work by Asymptote co-founder Hani Rashid.

As announced this month at Art Basel Miami Beach, Berlin-based architect Gustav Duesing and artist Sho Hasegawa won the Biennial’s open call and will join other explorers on the expedition next year.

Below, the Antarctic Biennial–produced video, complete with foghorns and rapid-fire closed captioning, pretty much says it all:

Learn more about the polar biennale here.

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