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Ice watch

The Emergency! project as a whole, reflects on change on what emerges through ‘loss’. Visiting the glacial archaeology sites, and environments exposed by retreating glaciers, its apparent that these are rapidly developing sites of emergence as plant species take root in new ground, ‘beaches’ of glacial sand abutting proglacial lakes and melt streams.

The mud – or ‘glacial milk’ nourishing these plants is a fine mineral rich sediment, formed by years of erosion and glacial scouring. Like the archaeology, it is something now revealed by ice loss. Over the course of the residency, alongside the fieldwork and film making, I’ve been collecting the mud, using it as a pigment to make images of the environments I visited, painting it on to glass watch faces ( themselves a signifier of time and change).

The drawing is made as a negative image, like a reduction print – made by scraping away the surface, the whites of the ice and highlights. Then held up to the light, it casts a shadow, another presence of absence.

NB. Icewatcher is the name of the app, developed and used by the Canton of Valais to enable public to report their finds. More information here>> or downlaod in the app store for IOS or Android.


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