AntArcticMatters cataloque

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(Ant)Arctic Matters a project by Dixie Dansercoer

One can ask what drives them to visit the poles every so often. Something in their homeland must be much worse than this barren land here. a thought after watching ÂŤScream of StoneÂť by Werner Herzog.


Has the growing interest in the melting of the ice and snow-covered surfaces which keep the earth cool at last aroused people from their slumbers? Is the overwhelming evidence of a rapidly-changing climate leading people to ask fundamental questions? And where do we now stand with regard to our feelings of superiority vis-à -vis nature? How much time do we still have before it is too late for us? Human beings are looking for answers. As an enthusiastic polar explorer, I can perhaps better appreciate the critical value of the cooling Arctic and Antarctic ice fields. I have enjoyed the privilege of experiencing the immense beauty and power of this unique habitat. Being surrounded for months at a time by the endlessness of the ice desert is a lesson in humility. Each time I am once again made aware of our relative insignificance as human beings. The monotony of each day during an expedition, for over 100 days, eating the same frozen lump of food, dragging the weight of the sled towards ... our pre-determined virtual end point. I constantly experience the essential meaning of survival. Year-round ice increasingly disappears on the Arctic Ocean, a frozen sea which currently struggles to reflect the sun’s rays. Soon, as an ice-free mass of water, it will be directly absorbing the sun’s heat and dispersing it to vulnerable coastal areas farther south. The Inuit inhabitants of Shishmaref, the Alaskan village which has disappeared because of the rising sea level demonstrated to me the consequences of their climate-induced relocation. Fauna and flora no longer represent what I learned from standard polar literature... Does our alienation from nature make us indifferent to the pernicious consequences of a far too-rapidly changing environment? (Ant)Arctic Matters hopes in a unique way to make a constructive contribution to stopping our self-destruction, while at the same time promoting greater awareness and active participation.

Dixie Dansercoer, Polar Traveler and Global Observer


A delicate balancing act The question remains whether every blind ambition which strives for human progress is in fact compatible with an ecosystem that functions on the basis of equilibrium, one which has already kept our earth going for more than five billion years. But human beings, who only recently made their appearance on the world’s stage, use their intellect as a weapon against nature in order to satisfy the limitless urge for greater comfort. Over time, this comfort bubble has grown larger and larger, while its walls have become ever thinner and more easily punctured. A delicate balance: the fragile human intellect versus the indomitable spectacle of the natural elements.

Creative platform The exhibition (Ant)Arctic Matters is the result of years of thinking about how to constructively build a unique and international awareness-raising platform. It was inspired by the idea that thoughtless handling of nature’s raw materials is not only affecting our own garden, but creates highly volatile materials which are only too happy to travel all around the world, often hitting the most disadvantaged people the hardest. Dixie Dansercoer invited artists to touch the visitor’s soul within the context of this theme. Seeing, hearing, smelling and feeling. Perception is what moves us today. A means of communication that he is pleased to present in order to use to focus attention on our harmony with nature, and then to act in accordance with it. The habitat of the exhibition, with its circular arrangement of 13 containers, strives for a global symbolism.


The climate changes. Will you change as well?

The GLOBAL MATTERS CHARTER To strengthen the cross-border goal of the exhibition, we built a platform where we invite you as individual or organisation to take an engagement. The Global Matters Charter offers you the chance to get involved! The individual subscriber will sign a commitment with himself, as collective organisations will pursue change and will report for a period of 3 years.

You can activate your engagement via


[ i matter ] PERSONAL GLOBAL MATTERS CHARTER Goal: To create a global movement with the strong conviction that personal actions help to stop and reverse global warming. By signing on, individuals are invited to make the difference on a best effort basis and pass on the pledge to other people. • Avoid unnecessary CO2 emissions. • Buy local, think global. • Recycle where you can and lobby for more recycling programs in my immediate surroundings. • Reduce my ecological footprint by re-thinking engrained habits. • Gently remind people around me that every reduction of CO2 saves lives. • Refuse comfort tools when sound physical movement can replace them. • Offset/compensate incompressible CO2 emissions.

[ We matter ] CORPORATE AND COLLECTIVE GLOBAL MATTERS CHARTER Goal: Invite corporate businesses and other social or academic assemblies which want to make a change in their organizations. By signing this initiative, the undersigned accepts to commit to and execute a gradual changeover to help protect our environment. • Make an analysis of our organization’s carbon/ecological footprint and reduce it by 10% each year. • Create a ‘green team’ within the company. • Educate and inform employees and all stakeholders about our environmental impact. • Invite employees to propose ONE GREEN CHANGE. • Challenge our suppliers and choose for environmentally conscious deliveries. • Identify incompressible CO2 emissions that should be offset. • Share the Global Matters Charter internally and externally.


[Australis] Dixie Dansercoer - Polar ‘Exhibitionist’

The immense Antarctic continent is a single large land mass. Mountain ranges pierce through a layer of ice averaging 3,000 metres thick! Animals can only survive on the coasts of this continent, because the vast ice desert in the interior affords them no food at all. Katabatic winds and powerful storms dominate and, due to the extremely dry atmosphere, only very small amounts of snow fall there. Ice cores drilled by scientists give us a glimpse at thousands of years of the history of our planet. They also teach us that human beings can apply their intelligence for two opposing goals. Either we completely exhaust the natural riches of our earth, or we try to maintain the vitally necessary equilibrium in nature. Obviously the second choice is the right one!

Concept and photography Filming Video montage Sound design

Dixie Dansercoer Johnny Steenbeke Alain Hubert Kris Grieten Bart Van Huyck Mick Brown


[Borealis] Dixie Dansercoer - Polar ‘Exhibitionist’

The thin layer of ice which covers the Arctic Ocean is just one or two metres thick. That ice forms the dynamic natural habitat of many animals which are looking for food. For them, this vulnerable layer of ice is of vital importance. People too have long lived in the cold, salty and wet environment of the Arctic land mass, and they are the first to experience the alarming consequences of the disappearing ice. Whoever has been able to admire the aurora borealis in a reflective environment of ice and snow knows that this unique combination is the soundless folk song of this unique spot on earth.

Concept and photography Filming Photography Video montage Sound design

Dixie Dansercoer Johnny Steenbeke Alain Hubert Bjorn Jorgensen Kris Grieten Bart Van Huyck Mick Brown

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[Protect 7-7] Wim Tellier - Connecting Dreams

In February 2009, photographer Wim Tellier went with his four-person team to the South Pole to create the first art installation there. Six gigantic photos (each 800 m2) of sunbathing elders were assembled on the coldest place in the world. A reference to the global warming predicament. PROTECT 7-7 expanded into a worldwide multi-layered photographic art project in which the continents, the elderly and children form the working basis of a gigantic carrousel of ideas. The seven continents stand for the earth, the elderly stand for their legacy, the 4,500 children stand for the future and dreams. The union of the six continents on the seventh, neutral continent was chosen in order to emphasise that all of us are living on the same planet.

The installation was exhibited on Antarctica near the Princess Elisabeth Research Station between 26 January and 6 February 2009. Wim Tellier photographed this installation from the air, at temperatures of -58째C. Six continents and millions of dreams were brought together on the seventh continent.

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[Inuit Controversy] Freddy Cappon Moulding a sustainable future for a threatened culture. The Inuit from the past was hunter, fisherman, and nature-lover; his surroundings - the ice. His adaptation to the cold was remarkable. He had to rely upon hunting, his igloo, polar bear hides and his sleds. Today’s Inuit communities are confronted with a rapid intrusion of modern technology and its associated complications. During this period of difficult adaptation, the ice is disappearing. Fish is less abundant, caribu and whales are harder to catch. Biodiversity is at stake. All of this together has made these proud people very vulnerable. Is there still a future for the Inuit? It is surely an open question, but what seems to be happening, is that a higher standard of living has replaced a higher reason for living... Maybe in our society we are good at hiding the destructive forces of evolution, but the Inuit are clearly suffering. These art pieces are meant to make modern man reflect on the forceful nature of modern lifestyles.

INUKSUK (ie-noe-soek) means acting in the capacity of a human being. The �inuksuk � is a symbol with deep roots in the Inuit culture that stands for safety, hope and hospitality. The Inuksuk interpretation of Freddy Cappon is a modern hopeful expression of this, an ecological guide for all of us.

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[Ice by Bits] Ludwig Desmet - Water as topic, water as tool

We try to capture nature in a number of mathematical algorithms, but we will never ever manage to capture nature as it really IS; always changing and adapting, within endless variations, world wide... Hopeless... Knowing the reality in order to produce a so-called all-encompassing image with tens of processors and weeks of computer calculations, it is refreshing to realize that we will never be able to copy nature. So even with this idea as a starting point, it seems logical that this is an impossible quest. The next step is accepting the non-perfection by producing computer-generated images of the elements that play the leading roles in the (Ant)Arctic: water, ice, mist, ... And light, of course, source of all life. The computer-generated images are projected on a curtain of flowing water. The viewer is confronted with amazing impressions of this precious element in all its forms. An abstract and yet tangible presentation of the constantly changing circumstances in Arctica and Antarctica. Just like water becomes ice and vapour liquid.

Concept and motiongraphics Music

Ludwig Desmet Peter Roggeman

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[2 Coda] Bart Van Huyck - Have you ever been disturbed by nature’s sounds? The strange human gift of looking away when a fellow human being is being robbed in a train station for example, is the same weird gift that we seem to have when ruining our own living grounds. We quiet our subconscious feelings of guilt by donating money to NGO’s. We don’t seem to stop giving to our children what they do not need. As long as we prove to others that we buy recycled products, we do the right thing? And we dare to call Nature ‘our’ Nature? Authenticity not only is admirable in people; authenticity is a powerful fact in nature as well. Authenticity is what we are in the process of losing, on many levels. And if we all want an authentic nature, then we would do better to leave nature for what it is and stop shaping it to fit our conceptions. With the musical composition 2 Coda, musician Bart Van Huyck blends primitive and contemporary compilations into a moving atmosphere in which the visitor can literally feel the richly layered sound landscapes. Those who can let this auditory experience penetrate deep within come into contact with the often ignored signals which are audible all around us.

Music Galaxy Studios Sound engineer

Bart Van Huyck Wilfried Van Baelen and Guus Fluit Patrick Lemmens

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[View Mastering] Didier Volckaert - 3D Turnaround The monumental and alienating aspect of (Ant)Arctica often produces beautiful but empty images. What is common to all these images is their flatness, both substantively and visually. “VIEW MASTERING” is an optical installation which seeks neither to aestheticise nor inform. It doesn’t have good intentions. It is a use experience and a viewing experience. These experiences are based firstly on action and consequence, secondly on contrast and sensuality. “VIEW MASTERING” is based on Dead Media technology: systems and devices that have fallen into disuse and are often forgotten, and thus are ‘dead’. These are devices which are rarely explored for their wider range of possibilities. Even before their utility had become well-established they were already replaced by newer systems, which in their turn would all too quickly join the ranks of dead media themselves. This is a consequence of economic necessity within our consumer society. In 2008 the technology turnover rate was somewhere between 5 and 10 years. The latest additions to the ever-growing dead media mountain include film stock and dia film; soon to be followed by (digital) videotape. The recording device wich was used to make STEREOSCOPIC photograms was a VIEWMASTER CAMERA dating from 1952. It is an entirely mechanical device and doesn’t even have a battery. It has been tested at -30°. Looking at such images is a solitary and intimate experience. During that time, the viewer is visually closed off from the reality around him. Furthermore, the stereoscopic effect produces an alienating proximity, as if the image were tangible. Only light is necessary in order to look at the images. The current for the light source is provided by the viewer himself, through the physical action of turning a handle. The speed of turning determines the amount of current ... and thus also the light in which one sees the image. “VIEW MASTERING” confronts, eroticises, romanticises and demystifies in order to allow the viewer to reflect about water and what it means for him or her. Just like ice is a frozen state of water, the pictures are a crystallised form of various layers of meaning, frozen in a stationary image. The work does however allude to “l’origin du monde” (1866) by Gustave Courbet (1819-1877). He too didn’t paint reality more beautiful than it was ... Concept and photography Laboratory

Didier Volckaert - Reinhart Cossaert - 21 -


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[The Modern Denial of Nature] Hermann - Where do You stand in the bigger picture? Since the Industrial Revolution, the speed of human activity has increased uncontrollably. Just like the reciprocal exchanges between the four major nature elements, water, earth, air and fire, the sum of man’s activities will have an undeniable impact on planet earth. What still distinguishes us from the four other forces of nature is limited to the fact that people are able to understand their position and possibly to act in that knowledge. The future will reveal whether this starting point is an advantage. By realising our position in the middle of the earthly forces, we should be able to adapt our movements. But we do not seem to feel the need to question our civilization or progress, now found at the far ends of the globe. Is it not so that we all have been imprisoned now that we realize that pleasing our desires is no longer a priority? Our comfort zone and laisser-aller definitely estranged us from nature. We have ingeniously tried to correct here and there in order to rebalance ourselves but these endeavors will soon face strong competition from Nature’s laws. The realization that ‘Erosion’ has no mercy could strengthen our belief that our playful materialistic consumptive edge as we have known it till now, will soon need a time-out. ‘The Modern Denial of Nature’, is a photographic and videographic creation featuring the silent beauty surrounding ice, snow and an endless love. ‘Out of the blue’, just like nature and life present its infinity for those who still have an eye for it. A winter’s journey in the wake of Dixie Dansercoer to the Arctic Circle, a walk around the Aletsch Glacier, a fierce thunderstorm during the night of May 26, 2009 and the crash of the Airbus Rio de Janeiro - Paris on June 1, 2009, inspired this creation. Concept, photography and video footage Video editing and motion graphics Sound design

Hermann Inneke Van Waeyenberghe Peter Lenaerts The ruthlessness of erosion may reinforce in us the awareness that the “materialistic recess” as we have known it until now, will soon need a ‘time out’. - 23 -

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[(Ant)Arctica speaks] Julie Brown - Thaw your Resistance

Eco-tourism to remote areas of our globe provides us with the privilege to return as witnesses. We are able to describe in passionate detail the conditions of threatened cultures, telling vivid stories to those “armchair travelers” less able to make these logistically complex and somewhat uncomfortable journeys. We are able to expose human populations in the Arctic, for example, in need of assistance, people suffering from tragic social diseases in their struggle to roll with the changes of our contemporary times. Yet we are less able and less willing to examine how our behavior is part of the problem. It is time to thaw our resistance to change. We each play a vital role on our planet Earth. We each represent a unique and irreplaceable piece in the intricate puzzle which comprises our global population. Our need to change - to adapt our lifestyle – is as necessary as those cultures far away in these seemingly remote regions. We are all threatened. Yet we are all powerful & capable to make a difference. The process of thawing is sublimely passive. It symbolizes acceptance, a non-resistant “letting go” – a transformation. What awaits us on the other side of change? Surely something different, surely something which will require adaptation, but perhaps something ... magical. Allow wonder to guide you on our common journey ahead. Let’s redefine “progress” together.

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[WWF] Our Heritage is not just about saving whales and tigers and rainforests, and preventing pollution and waste, but is inescapably concerned with the future conduct, welfare, and happiness and indeed survival of mankind on this planet. Max Nicholson, founder WWF in 1961

The emission of greenhouse gases causes global warming, whose effects can already be observed at the poles. These changes will influence the entire world. We must therefore quickly take radical steps throughout the world in order to prevent a catastrophic climate change. If we succeed in keeping the temperature increase to less than 2°C, we can avoid disasters. It’s still not too late.

Support WWF –

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[UNICEF] “Every drop counts ...”

”Access to clean water, to sanitary installations and good hygiene is a fundamental right for all children, and a necessary condition in order to survive.” Frank De Winne, ESA astronaut and volunteer ambassador of UNICEF Belgium

Today, a lack of clean water, toilets and knowledge of basic hygiene is the cause of almost 20% of the deaths of children under age 5. For many years now, UNICEF has fought this situation, which is not an inevitability. Your help is more than necessary in order to save children’s lives every day. Only through your support can we help prevent 5,000 children per day from dying around the world. Every drop counts ... Child mortality has fallen, but too many children under the age of 5 are still dying today, generally as a result of diseases which could easily have been prevented. It is in this context that UNICEF continues to give aid and is conducting the ‘WaSH’* campaign, which concentrates its efforts on assuring access to clean water, toilets and knowledge of basic hygiene for all children. *

WaSH is an integrated programme of UNICEF and stands for Water – Sanitation – Hygiene

Take part in the ’WaSH’ campaign.

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[Pedal to Power] Johan De Ruyck

James Lovelock said: ‘To survive we have to pollute.’ He is the man who came up with the Gaia theory, a model for our earth and its climatological equilibrium. This equilibrium is disrupted by human beings and their excessive consumption and waste of energy. We are the most energy and luxury spoiled generation of all time, and we are bearing down on a tipping point of around 500 ppm CO2. If this limit is exceeded, the climate will react turbulently. The consequences of this are irreversible and will put human civilisation under severe pressures throughout the world. The efforts we are making today to counter this are simply inadequate. Moreover, the situation is further influenced by rising population pressure; a larger number of people are acceding to a higher standard of living, and their ecological footprint is growing as well. The objective is to limit average worldwide temperature increase to less than 2°C relative to the level prior to the industrial revolution. This position is now supported by the scientific world, the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) and even by the European political elite. The IPCC, set up in 1988, is an organisation of the United Nations which serves as an objective source of information on climate change. The Environment Committee of the European Parliament, which is preparing the draft resolution for the climate conference of Copenhagen in December 2009, even goes so far as to say that future generations may be unable to control climate change if worldwide action does not go much further than current efforts. With this resolution Europe takes up a new challenge: a long-term emission reduction objective of at least 80% by 2050 (relative to the level of 1990).

Alternative energy applied during (Ant)Arctic Matters Symbolic. The bicycle is simply the most efficient means of transport ever invented. The human body is the engine, with a special way to store energy using food as the energy source. One hundred kilocalories gives the cyclist enough energy for an average of 5 km, while an average car can only go 85 metres with that amount. Therefore the electric bike is the most efficient way to convert human energy into electrical energy and vice versa. ‘A green bicycle is thus a pleonasm.’ The visitors to (Ant)Arctic Matters can personally experience what it means to generate energy by vigorously bicycling. Green Technology. We also create electricity by means of solar panels which are mounted on the roofs of the containers. The weather conditions influence the electricity harvest. Should we hope for a lot of sunshine, or do we deal as economically as possible with our energy needs? With thanks to Professor Phillippe Lataire and Nico Smets (VUB), Belgian Energy Bike Champion Werner Musenbrock, Kristof Nootens, Jan Demeyer and Frederic Meerschman. - 31 -

[Sponsors] [ICE]

Main sponsor/partner

Multimodal Container Transport throughout the World


structural partner - sponsor

E-Business enabler

Products powered by nature

Sustainable energy

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supporting partner - sponsor

supporting partner - sponsor

Environmental friendly solar energy

Audio visual technology

Colored by Levis paints


Organic tent structure



logistic partner - sponsor

Alpro Belgibo CO2Logic Deltalight Forbo Galaxy HP MacTac Mazak Microsoft PowerShop

Soya products Insurance Reducing CO2 emission LED lighting Flooring Sound studio Printing inks Self adhesive solutions Machine tool technology MSN Messenger Electricity for events


Container management services

logistieke partner - sponsor

Ridley Sanyo SAS SOUDAL Talent & Vision TDP ThyssenKrupp VBO Forward VOLVO CoCom

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Innovative bikes Audio visual products Superior software Adhesives Audio visual facilities Digital printing Integrated materials & technology group Federation of Enterprises in Belgium VBO magazine Cars Social engagement

[colophon] Editors Dixie Dansercoer, Jo De Ruyck, Frank Vanaerschot, UNICEF, Herman Vanaerschot, WWF, Julie Brown, Yolanda Witteveen, Didier Volckaert. Text correction: Julie Brown Translations Telelingua Photocredits Didier Volckaert: Dixie Dansercoer: Laurent Dick: Ludwig Desmet: Hermann: Wim van Passel / WWF-Canon: UNICEF Burkina Faso Marieke Van Der Velden:

cover, p 20 inner cover, p 2, p 3, p 6, p 10, p 24 p8 p 16 inner cover, p 4, p 14, p 15, p 18, p 22, p 30 p 26 p 28

Graphic design and print production IJsbreker nv Paper: Arctic Paper

Inside pages: Arctic Volume White 170 g Cover: Arctic Volume White 250 g

Ivzw (Ant)Arctic Matters International non-profit association - International foundation Chairman: Dixie Dansercoer Deputy chairman Peter De Merlier Organization (Ant)Arctic Matters Chairman: Peter De Merlier Business management: Jean Pierre Deschepper Artistic management: Herman Vanaerschot PR and communication: Dixie Dansercoer International relations: Agnieska Jablonska Organization: Yolanda Witteveen Copyright 2009

Nothing from this edition may be reproduced and/or made public by means of printing, photocopy, CD or DVD or in any other manner without the prior written consent of (Ant)Arctic Matters ivzw and the holders of the copyrights

Cert no. CU-COC-809718-CL

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