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With a crew of artists and scholars I'm going on a expedition to the arctic pursuing my passion for glaciers, data, and the poles.
With a crew of artists and scholars I'm going on a expedition to the arctic pursuing my passion for glaciers, data, and the poles.
184 backers pledged $12,149 to help bring this project to life.

spring and summer update ….press, prints, exhibitions and more

Dear Backers, 

The work that you all helped begin is coming to fruition. Images, sound and inspiration gathered from my expedition to the arctic have led to work that has already been exhibited widely. A new, major film is nearly complete. Many new visual works are complete and have been printed. I cannot thank you enough for helping realize this work and I am looking forward to finally shipping finalized artwork to my Kickstarter supporters.

Also, I would like to announce that in the next update, going out by next week, I will post samples of the video, sound...and soon after the book design. I will also share video of the recent installation sila that premiered in Montreal under that title, and then again in NYC in an event I titled earth flat. This installation was an enormous challenge physically and conceptually. The work based on the expedition you supported was a success and will grow into something everyone will be proud of! Far after your rewards are sent out, I will keep you posted on the art that you helped create. And very soon I will begin contacting everyone for mailing addresses to send out rewards.

In this update #10 I have examples of the prints I will soon be sending out to many of you, as well as recent press and images form the last two exhibitions you helped make happen. Meanwhile some of you may have noticed that my image and this project are now on the Kickstarter homepage!

This winter and spring, into May and June, I worked very hard to put together an installation I titled Sila. Sila is the Greenlandic the word for weather plus the human intelligence and the Universe, when you add ‘rsuaq’ to it, the word becomes Silarsuaq, translating into the Universe. I was invited to do an installation by Eastern Bloc in Montreal as part of SIght and Sound a month long festival in May. This work I brought to Brooklyn's Reverse Space in June and held a series of performances based on my work. You can read more about this and more in a few different articles posted below, including a feature in Impose Magazine and a piece written by Creators Project. I encourage reading and sharing the articles as this is something you helped make happen...As well, I'm including images from both exhibitions.

Images from recent press

During this time I worked on the prints, sound, and video that will be published as part of your rewards. Here are images of the prints and the installation. As well video and sound coming in the next update.

(Images from top to bottom: sight and sound programs, earth flat postcard, six views of the sila installation, Arturo Vidich performs in front of sila at Reverse, MV Carbon performs in front of sila at Reverse, four images of the small prints as they displayed in Montreal, and lastly an image of the larger prints )

For those of you receiving a higher gift than the postcard, I would like each one of you to receive a small print by me as a thank you for your patience and understanding the gifts are later than expected. Each print is a 4" X 4" one of a kind that was shown in both Montreal and in Brooklyn at Reverse. Lastly the new book and cd release is still scheduled to happen this summer. It is my goal to make this work valuable and of the highest quality, thank you for understanding this in advance and thank you for your support!

All the best,

news about upcoming shows and your rewards

Dear Backers, 

I want to share some recent news and developments in my work as well as give an update on backer gifts. I am pleased to announce quite a few things. First, video stills and ice images for those of you receiving prints will be up and online in the next three weeks for you to choose from. Along with the images there will be notes on my process for the video stills, as the algorithms used are quite special, and the results very unique. Further, all unprocessed ice images will have location information, so that you will know where the berg was when captured. 

I’m excited that video stills will be shown in April at Reverse gallery here in Brooklyn, NY. I will also have a solo show at Reverse gallery in June showing still images and a major new installation, Sila, based on the expedition. The sound and video some Kickstarter backers will be receiving will be integrated into Sila. 

I have also been invited by the interdisciplinary organization Eastern Bloc to premier Sila in May in Montreal in the Sight and Sound Festival. I will forward details about this art and process by the end of March. Included in the installation will be a thank you to all of the backers; none of the work would be possible without you. 

I will be speaking about my expedition and new work in April at University of Buffalo in a Symposium titled “Landscape Across the Disciplines” . I will make sure to share images and details of this event. 

Lastly, my CD, DVD and book will not be released with the label until May or early June. Please forgive this delay! I want to ensure a proper publication of the material. In the meantime, I will upload samples of sound, video and production details within the next few weeks and share those links with you. 

There is so much to come and I’m very excited to share it all with you. Thank you again for backing what is turning into the birth of my most ambitious work to date.

 All the best! Melissa
(video still above & more video stills below...enjoy!)

a post expedition update and news about the future

Dear Backers,

First, let me extend my sympathies to anyone who has been affected by the recent hurricane. I was fortunately not affected in major ways, but all of us in the New York City area and in many parts of the Northeast have been affected one way or another.

As we continue to adjust and experience ever shifting more intense weather patterns, I am reminded of the tenor in the air as I packed for the Arctic expedition. News was rampant about the melting of the Greenlandic Ice Sheet. I left New York’s JFK airport with great anticipation and fear for what we might come across once we got to Greenland.

Upon my arrival I found an Arctic that was unusually warm and almost balmy. There were days that I stripped down to a t-shirt during hikes. I was told by many Greenlanders that this weather was a change from years ago. As I became part of the communities there, I was brought to see lines on the sides of islands that marked where ice once thrived. I was told about how winter ice and snow affected the lifestyles of hunters and communities living with sea ice and tremendous snow falls as a part of life. I went aboard research vessels that tracked populations of fish and whales affected by the recent and more extensive use of seismic sounding for oil, gas, and other types of resource exploration. I eventually left our ship, The Wanderbird, and took the opportunity to travel with two anthropologists, one a native of Greenland. We then went further North and deeper into the communities than the original chartered ship would allow. We went far up the coast, reaching 73 degrees and farther North into small, remote villages and along the ice sheet where thunderous sounds and cracking squeaking noises marked the tremendous activity of the ice.

In addition to collecting environmental data, taking field recordings, and videotape, I sat in on interviews with hunters who told me of the changes in sea ice over the last 20-60 years that they witnessed. I was welcomed into Greenlandic homes and I was taken to places along the ice sheet and around the waters of the Arctic Seas that most people will never experience. I will always feel honored for these special opportunities.

Even in this context of the changing environment, the coast of Greenland still rules as a mecca of geological, natural splendor, and I saw a tremendous amount of ice, in more varied form and scale then I imagined I would. The Arctic, and Greenland in particular, is a place like no other that needs to be documented now. The arctic needs to be written about and understood, since it will change immensely over the next twenty years. I welcome you to visit my uploaded images of ice and Greenlandic life on Facebook. Here you will see your rewards are going to be quite special!

My travels afforded me more content then I expected. I have more material and experience than I anticipated. As an artist this is a fantastic opportunity and I owe everything to you, my backers! Fortunately, I am now beginning a two month stay as an artist in residence at SUNY Stony Brook’s Simons Center for Geometry and Physics in Long Island. Here I am part of an upcoming exhibition and here I will be fulfilling your rewards.

For those of you receiving the CD and DVD, I’m happy to say that they are confirmed to be released on a sound art label this Winter. Because of the overwhelming amount of material I have been sorting through and other events this fall, things will come out a little later than projected. I assure you they will get to you this winter and the wait will be worth it! Other recent news of note include an article in the Village Voice blog published during my expedition, as well as future exhibitions of this work scheduled for the spring of 2013—I will continue to keep you updated on announcements. Thank you so much for being a part of this project. And know that I plan to return to Greenland and the Arctic in 2013-14 thanks to such a tremendous experience.

Enjoy a few images I’ve posted here...
And thank you so much again, all the best!
Melissa F. Clarke

we did it!! we are going to the arctic!

Dear Backers!
We are a success. The goal has been met and the project will be funded.
Hopefully people will continue to pledge as the extra money would surely come in handy for supplies and art materials.

More to come, but for now, thank you times a million.
I'm so honored by your support. Truly a wonderful feeling!

All the best!
Melissa F. Clarke

12 hours left 92% funded, and $848 to go—this is it!

Dear Backers,

We are near the end and it's so close! Surely we will make it.
I'm exited to update you with news about the expedition and more once the project reaches the goal. Today, I would love your help by getting the word out in this final push. 

Thank you so much for backing this project.
All the best!

Melissa F. Clarke