Vanishing Ice - Alpine and Polar Landscapes in Art, 1775 - 2012

January 31 to April 26, 2015

Lita Albuquerque, American, b. 1946, Stellar Axis, Constellation 1, 2006,

Lita Albuquerque, American, b. 1946, Stellar Axis, Constellation 1, 2006, Archival inkjet print by Jean de Pomereu, 20 ¾ x 47 ¼ in. (53 x 120 cm), Whatcom Museum, Gift of Jean de Pomereu, 2013.17.2


Whatcom MuseumOrganized by the Whatcom Museum, Bellingham, WA. Major funding for the exhibition has been provided by the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts with additional support from the Norcliffe Foundation, the Washington State Arts Commission, and the City of Bellingham.

Vanishing Ice offers a glimpse into the rich cultural legacy of the planet's frozen frontiers. International in scope, it traces the impact of glaciers, icebergs, and fields of ice on artists' imaginations. The exhibition explores connections between generations of artists who have adopted different styles, media, and approaches to interpret the magical light and fantastic shapes of ice.


Through the centuries, collaborations between the arts and sciences expanded awareness of Earth's icy regions. Early artists captivated the public with the first images that provided an understanding of the geography of alpine mountains, the Arctic, and Antarctica.


A resurgence of interest in these environments as dramatic indicators of climate change now inspires contemporary expeditions to the glaciers and poles. Today, artists, writers, and scientists awaken the world to both the beauty and increasing vulnerability of ice, which is critical for biological and cultural diversity.


Dr. Barbara Matilsky, Curator of Art

Vanishing Ice TimelineTIMELINE: Spanning over 400 years, the Vanishing Ice timeline surveys five interconnected areas: Alpine and Polar Literature, Alpine Exploration, Polar Exploration, Fueling the Economy, and Climate Science. View/download pdf

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