Work from Midnight Sun.
“Midnight Sun responds to the ill-fated true story of the Andree Polar Expedition of 1897, in which three explorers set out to be the first to reach the North Pole using a hot air balloon. After crashing on the arctic ice halfway through the journey, the three explorers survived the next few months in the arctic, continuing to photograph and record their observations of the landscape. These materials and the bones of the men were found on a remote arctic island thirty years later. In the face of death, what was it that urged these three explorers to continue to make photographs? Through reinterpreting this historical event, Midnight Sun investigates the mirror effect between the landscape and the photograph, and how each informs our understanding of the natural world and ourselves. Using photographs sourced from stock imagery, beach towels, Google image searches, and original imagery, I explore how photographs mediate nature in the contemporary context. Exploring cultural, scientific, and personal themes within the story of these three explorers, I question my own perceptions of nature and the ways in which photography becomes an expression of the precarious desire to understand and to communicate.” – Brooks Dierdorff