AT THE CORE:
DISCOVERING THE HISTORY OF ICE AND CLIMATE CHANGE
Anna McKee, artist in Vanishing Ice and Eric Steig, isotope geochemist
Saturday, December 7, 2013, 2-3:30 pm
The history of our planet’s climate is coming into clearer focus thanks to an 11,171-foot ice core collected by West Antarctic Ice Sheet Divide scientists.
University of Washington Professor of Glaciology and Geochemistry Eric Steig, who has researched polar regions for more than 20 years, is part of this pioneering project that is allowing scientists to peer back 100,000 years into the past.
Expeditionary artist Anna McKee also has a fascination for frozen places, and that curiosity led her to visit the Antarctic research site on a National Science Foundation grant. Her paintings and prints reveal characteristics of snow and ice that may not be obvious: “There’s something about the quality of freezing and capturing things like atmosphere, capturing somebody’s breath. I had all these fantasies: does it catch the voices and hold those?”
McKee and Steig will share their experiences with the WAIS Divide Ice Core Project and lead a discussion about how collaborations among artists and scientists enrich each discipline and deepen our connection to the natural world.
“I’m really interested in looking at the world and figuring out ‘what is this?,’” explains McKee. “Scientists in a very different way, with very different tools, are asking the same questions: what is around us? How do we understand it?