Mindy, Tuesday 1 September 2009
Weather: -20°C; 30 knots of wind; clear skies and blowing snow
Captain Scott found that the crew for his Terra Nova expedition (1910-1913) were men of many talents. Not only were they explorers and scientists, several were also gifted artists. To mention a few, Dr. Edward Wilson (who travelled with Scott to the Pole) and Herbert Ponting (expedition photographer) are well-known for their striking images of the Antarctic landscape.
Some of today’s staff at Scott Base are artistic as well. Brian, Antarctica New Zealand field support person, found that the winter of 2009 presented him with a unique Antarctic artistic endeavour.
What started as a project to replace a damaged hat became the ‘Scott Base Winter Hat Collection’. By the end of the season, each of the 26 base and event staff had their own personalised hat, modelled at an official showing this past Sunday night.
This was not the first time Brian had been involved in the artistic side of life in the Antarctic. In the winter of 2003, he organised a ‘one night only’ art exhibition in a temporary gallery space at Scott Base. The newly painted video room showcased a variety of artistic works, all donated by members of that season’s winter crew.
Over the winter, we’ve also watched Brian refurbish the collection of sleds at Scott Base. His enthusiasm for the project was undeniable, and allowed him to combine his love of things artistic (he has a Bachelor of Fine Arts) with his years of experience in Antarctic field support and survival training. After first coming to the Antarctic 25 years ago, he’s spent 14 seasons on ice. I marvel at Brian’s collection of talents and abilities – a man of many talents indeed.