Photographer: James Balog
Having taken to working on our independent art projects during the weekend days and curling up on the couch to watch inspiring documentaries in the evening, it was exceptionally perfect timing when Edit Evening suggested we watch Chasing Ice on Saturday night.
For weeks I’ve been working on a uni assignment inspired by Iceland’s infamous glaciers, yet despite all my research I knew nothing of James Balog or his work with the Extreme Ice Survey (EIS). Chasing Ice documents the work of the EIS, who use time-lapse photography, conventional photography and video to document the effects of global warming on glacial ice. It is the most wide-ranging glacier study ever conducted. The EIS aims to show epochal change happening within the time frame of human life, and to provide scientists with a photographic record to understand the mechanics and pace of glacial retreat and how it relates to climate change.
Chasing Ice one of the most hauntingly beautiful, emotive and tragic documentaries I’ve ever seen. Balog himself described witnessing the effects of global climate change as a “miracle and horror”.
Poignant and majestic, getting to see the glaciers in such high definition as captured in the documentary is as close as I’ll get to them for now. It has long been my intention visit Iceland on my next overseas trip, to see the glaciers first hand and maybe a glimpse of the aurora borealis if I’m so lucky – but now I feel like I need to make that trip happen as soon as possible because the glaciers might not be there if I wait much longer, and that knowledge is heartbreaking.
After seeing the documentary I felt harmoniously validated in the direction I’ve been taking my jewellery. It’s given me a renewed passion and energy for the assignment I’m currently working on and drive to explore this subject matter further.
Chasing Ice is available to download through Netflix and iTunes (US only). The DVD will be available to order in November 2013. For more information on Chasing Ice visit www.chasingice.com.