Tuesday, 4 October 2011

the world comes to me

© Tim Cresswell

Professor Cresswell in the office next door
who studies the 'notions of place'
and the 'concept of mobility'
has just returned from a journey to the Arctic circle.
He was part of a team of people creating a new nation
from the landscape revealed by retreating ice sheets.

The artist Alex Hartley discovered the island
and registered it as 'Nowhereisland' in 2004.
This autumn he brought together a team
to travel to the Arctic and design a Utopia
considering fundamental issues of statehood.
Rocks from the island were removed
with permission from the Governor of Svalbard
and in 2012 these will form a floating sculpture
travelling from port to port around the English coast.
This voyage is part of the Cultural Olympiad
and will be used for lessons in citizenship in schools.
You can learn more about the project
and read the blog on the excellent website.

What moved me was the reaction of my colleague
who said it was one of the best things
that he had done in his life.
For three weeks he left his academic work behind
and lived in a world of sea and ice.
The experience will shape his future work
and will inform a generation of school children
as they think about the world they want to live in.
It was a privilege to hear about it first hand.

Migration and hospitality - lessons from Svalbard


  1. I love it when the world goes to you and then you pass it on to me............

  2. I am both with Driftwood and Menopausalmusing!

  3. You make it sound much more positive and interesting than the media did. And by that I mean Radio 4.

  4. That's one of the most appealing home pages for this type of project that i've encountered on the web. However, am i dense, or are there really no images of the floating creation to be viewed? Must go email the citizens to ask.

  5. What a lovely read I've just had. Much of your world came to me. many missed posts.
    Such fun

    OH! Squeak! The 'word ' is funsly. I had a very funsly time reading your blog.

  6. Sometimes I really miss research and academia. This post is a very good example of the reason why.


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