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Reviewed by Michele Ayres, Kaitiaki Pukapuka - Librarian
Opening sentence
Antarctica is the last true wilderness on the planet.
'Artists in Antarctica' invites readers to travel with and examine artists' responses when immersed in the Antarctic environment. Reading the sturdy colourful tome, we can pause with a red ribbon bookmark to reflect on the variety of artistic experiences and media forms used to interpret the Antarctic. Media forms include, but are not limited to, paint, prose, music and photography.

There are excellent signposts to navigate the 240 pages of Antarctica with a foreword by CEO of Antarctica NZ Sarah Williamson, Patrick Shepherd (Ed., and Canterbury University lecturer) discussing the potential that Antarctic art conveys to the world, while Adele Jackson extensively traverses NZ Antarctic Arts and Culture through memories and identities.

An index of artists such as Laurence Aberhart, Andre Apse, Nigel Brown, Gareth Farr, Dick Frizzell, Owen Marshall, Grahame Sydney and Phil Dadson links to summarised biographies (p. 233). The bulk of the book is dedicated to each of 37 artists' experiences (4-5 pages), from 100 or more artists who have visited the ice.

The works are distinctive, often collaborative, influenced by history, humanity, (Scott, Shackleton), science, animals, and the environment , and all reflect the vastness and minutiae of the fifth largest continent of Antarctica.

This book is a beautiful inspiring reminder of the ice cosmos and we are left to ponder what further changes will Antarctica face with global warming.
Author & Illustrator: Editor: Patrick Shepherd, illustrators: various
Publisher: Massey University Press
ISBN: 9781991016270
Format: Hardback
Publication: 9 Nov 2023
Ages: YA to Adult
Themes: Art, History, Exploration, Environment, Design, Poetry, Music, Literature