The Antarctic Biennale and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, share a deep commitment to preserving our legacy for future generations. On January 24, 2017, the biennale got UNESCO’s patronage in recognition of the project’s engagement with promotion of cultural and scientific exchange.
In her letter of support Ms Irina Bokova, UNESCO’s Director-General, states that the initiative is ‘in line with the priorities of the Organization aimed at promoting cultural and scientific exchange’. Ms Director-General is confident that the biennale ‘will help to raise awareness on the importance of international actions to mitigate the effects of climate change’.
Through the collaboration of artists, scientists and researchers, the Antarctic Biennale not only encourages cross-disciplinary networks, but also serves to highlight the significant role of the arts and culture in addressing the most urgent issues of our times. Creative crews participating in the first 12-day cruise to the ‘Last Continent’, will produce art models build on futuristic designs of intelligent and recyclable future. The biennale is going to be a platform for artistic ideas to give people a view of the future in a tangible way, so they can understand it.
For the Antarctic Biennale, this marks an important step towards its aim of ensuring that art empowers people to raise the awareness and build the platform for the better communication of the future of our planet. The cultural project addresses the issues, that relate to major concerns of UNESCO – how to live together, how to design a sustainable future, how to educate and inspire future generations.
Recognizing the important and changing role of culture in contemporary society, UNESCO supports the initiative of the Antarctic Biennale that goes beyond merely employing the arts as tools for information, but rather envisages art as a catalyst to stimulate discourse and foster change.
The UNESCO’s goal of Protecting Heritage and Fostering Creativity will be realized through the study of the unique Antarctic culture as a whole series of art projects implemented there.
To this end, the Antarctic Biennale brings together professionals from different sectors including arts, science, journalism and technology to address pertinent issues from their unique perspectives. Dialogue within this international sociocultural project is fostered through a variety of formats including artworks, performances, public talks, discussion panels and press conferences.
There will be no pavilions or traditional exhibitions in Antarctica. The event is built entirely on other principles – around ‘art in process’ approach, as Captain Nemo put it: “Mobilis in mobile!”. The participants will witness performances on the deck of the ship and on water; installations on the ice continent – a fully mobile structures of a temporary nature, consistent with the environmental principles of Antarctica. The biennale’s ambition voiced by its founder Alexander Ponomarev is defined as: it does not matter how long the artworks will live, the art’s mission is to create meanings.
The Antarctic Biennale’s team has communicated to UNESCO its highest commitment to the granted patronage, and the inspiration of working together for the sustainable development.
The Antarctic Biennale now proudly bears the logo of UNESCO.