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Features - Artists and Writers Program
The current aesthetics of McMurdo station and its field camps are not likely to go down in history as great achievements of modern architecture. But for photographer Shaun O'Boyle, this weathered, utilitarian look was a part of what attracted him to Antarctica.
There's a saying that necessity is the mother of invention. April Surgent discovered that being trapped by ice at a research station in Antarctica for the better part of two months required a little flexibility and ingenuity when it came to fulfilling her artistic vision.
After graduating with a Masters of Fine Arts degree, Susan J. Allspaw Pomeroy did what any other poet and academic would do: She jumped on a research boat to Antarctica to work as a tech writer. More than a dozen years later, Pomeroy published her debut book of poetry about her first love: Antarctica.
When poet Jynne Martin learned the National Science Foundation sponsored an Antarctic Artists and Writers Program, she immediately applied for a chance to visit the place of her childhood dreams. She followed seals and scientists in the pursuit to learn about the research for her next book of poetry.
Katharine Coles isn't your stereotypical poet. She founded the Utah Symposium in Science and Literature, and she comes from a family of scientists. So it certainly wasn't a stretch that her interest in science would take her to Antarctica on a grant from the National Science Foundation.
Larissa Min's family is originally from Korea. She was born in Brazil. At age 12, her family migrated from South America to the United States. The creative writer naturally tackles themes of identity and displacement. Her next continental shift will take place in Antarctica.
Chris Linder has taken part in two dozen research expeditions over the last decade, many of them to the polar regions. It seemed only a matter of time before he produced a book on his experiences from four of those expeditions, including one to Antarctica and a visit with the continent's iconic bird, the Adélie penguin.
Historian Edward Larson believes an important thread is missing from the vast tapestry of lore that has been spun about the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration. Many of the men who toiled, suffered and even died in the early 20th century did so first and foremost in the pursuit of science.
Poet Katharine Coles went to Palmer Station on an Antarctic Artists and Writers grant from the National Science Foundation. What compelled her to go? She answers as only a poet can: Truth, of course. Cheek-to-cheek contact with the sublime. Insight into the nature of reality.
Charles Hood's book will explore the relationship between aviation and science in Antarctica. He wonders: Is there really a strong relationship between flying and doing research? The answer from the scientists themselves: It's simple. No airplanes means no science.