Students off to the Arctic to bear witness to climate change

Griffith students will embark on an epic 12-day voyage around the Arctic to document the effects of climate change.

Queensland College of Art photography lecturer Dr Heather Faulkner and Adjunct Professor Earle Bridger launched the tour to highlight the connectedness of climate change around the globe.

Into the wild

Travelling with Nobel co-Laureates and expert arctic guides, Adjunct Professor John Rodsted and Mette Eliseussen, the students will fund their own travel to Svalbard, Norway in June, before embarking on a 12-day sail through the Earth’s northern seas.

The ten students come from a variety of disciplines including environmental science and engineering, photography, journalism, communications and the arts.

During the study tour, students will travel on the Linden, a wind-powered 3-masted tallship. They will engage with the people, landscapes and creatures that inhabit the Arctic.

The students will also participate in rubbish clean-ups while there. They have already committed to off-setting carbon emissions related to the trip.

A life-changing experience

Bachelor of Fine Art student Vanessa Scott

Bachelor of Fine Art student Vanessa Scott said she was looking forward to telling the human stories behind climate change.

“Climate change is such a vital, immediate concern, and the Arctic is really ground-zero,” she said.

“I think it will be a life-changing experience, and art is uniquely placed to raise awareness of these issues.

“People get bogged down in numbers and stats, but a piece of art can inspire real change.”

Art for a cause

Tomorrow evening, the Queensland College of Art will host an auction of artwork to raise funds for the trip.

The Signal to Noise Print Sale and auction will allow members of the public to purchase photographs and artworks by established and emerging practitioners. A large print auction of Antarctic and Arctic photographs by Nobel Peace Prize co-laureate John Rodsted will cap off the night.

Signal to Noise auction, 6 – 8pm, 14 February, Project Gallery, Queensland College of Art, 226 Grey Street, Southbank.