Preparations for the 1st Antarctic Biennale launch at the Explorers Club: Photos

An international crowed gathered last week at the famed Explorers Club on Manhattan’s Upper East Side to learn about on of the boldest art events ever conceived.

Following coffee in the club’s library, Artist Alexander Ponomarev laid out his vision for the 1st Antarctic Biennale to the crowd.

The 1st Antarctic Biennale will commence on March 27, 2017 in Ushuaia, Argentina — earth’s southernmost city. It will bring together international artists, visionaries, and scientists for a 12-day voyage aboard the Akademik Ioffe research ship. The expedition will make stops on islands of the Antarctic Archipelago. The approximate 100 members on board will view artworks in real time; the global audience can later see the art, video and photographs in various exhibition halls and museums.

“The Antarctic Biennale has no pavilions or exhibitions; instead it’s based completely on different principles,’’ Ponomarev said. “Process is the foundation of everything — performances on the ship’s deck and on water; installations on the ice; and fully mobile but temporary structures that are consistent with Antarctica’s environmental principles.”

Other speakers included architect Hani Rashid, philanthropist John Blaffer Royall, New York gallerist Richard Taittinger, Biennale director Veronika Gimenez, Zurich gallerist Natasha Akhmerova, and artist Matthew Ritchie. Diplomats from the United Nations were also present.

Rashid said the Antarctic Biennale can explore a new model of future living on other planets. Creating permanent settlements on the White Continent we will teach us how to survive in extreme adverse climates, and prepare to settle other worlds. On May 27, his architectural studio opens an exhibition in the Antarctic Pavilion during Venice’s Architectural Biennale to explore this issue. ANTARCTICA: RE-CYCLICAL is held within the framework of the Antarctic Biennale.

Gimenez spoke about an international competition for young artists, held in collaboration with leading art institutions, which will be announced later in summer. The competition winner will join the expedition.