Sit with this for a moment.
My next few days at sea were filled with glaciers, ice floes, icebergs... and an art exhibition (more on this shortly). We began our next day in a fjord branch of Krossfjorden, in front of the glacier Tinayrebreen. I spent most of the morning working on a pen and ink study of the glacier. What I found most interesting about this area was some of the snow features and the residual glacial ice. They remained in flat plains, sliced through by melt channels.
On our return to the Antigua from shore we moved very quietly. The ship had been drifting with the ice in the bay since it was so still and it had drifted right up next to a bearded seal who was resting on an ice floe.
Our next stop, Lloyd's Hotel. A self proclaimed 5-star establishment, a perfect place for an art exhibition! One of the other artist-in-residence, Fritz Horstman, organized and curated a small exhibition he entitled, Pole Saw. The first installment of art was within Lloyd Hotel. Not only was this small hut particularly interesting, but the landscape was unique and the weather this day gave us some peculiar clouds.
Part of the Pole Saw exhibition at Lloyd Hotel
Our next location, Fuglefjorden, has to be one of the most beautiful we visited. It also began to fuel my infatuation with floating ice. The colors of the ice and water were spectacular. One thing that truly struck me, while we were cruising in the zodiacs, was the sound of the ice melting. I liken the sound to Rice Crispies in milk or a mouthful of Poprocks. Larger ice bergs were breaking apart, turning to slush.
One of early locations, the floral lagoon of Ferskvassbukta, stuck with me since we departed.
While on land there I drew a small woodblock. During the evenings on the ship I carved the block and among the ice, snapping and popping, in front of the glacier Svidjodbreen, I pulled the first prints on my Arctic edition.
Although it certainly is not a normal studio set up, I would make prints here every day if I had the chance. While I had made a few watercolors and written quite a bit in these first days a sea, it felt great to print.
My roommate and I had some forethought before we left Longyearbyen and purchased some twine and some clothespins so that we could hang our art items to dry (me: prints, Ester: negatives). Room 2 was certainly and artists space.
I knew I was in the right place at this point. Being among ice was why I went to Svalbard, it was what I desperately needed to see (and still do) and something I long to visually speak about.