Patricia Wood and Alex Karaconji
Adam Sébire (b. Melbourne, Australia) is one of the Arctic’s 4 million human inhabitants.
Adam had just opened his solo exhibition at Svalbard’s art gallery when Covid closed Australia’s borders for 18 months, marooning him above Norway’s Arctic Circle; he now lives and works there.
Adam studied documentary filmmaking at the national film schools of Australia & Cuba, going on to direct documentaries for Australian public broadcasters ABC & SBS. His experiences filming on Tuvalu in 2003, only 2m above the rising waters of the Pacific, turned his work towards climate change and he completed an MFA (2015) on how the climate emergency presents particular representational challenges for visual art.
Adam will use his residency to develop a video triptych drawing on filmed materials collected over several years of visits to the Svalbard archipelago, 1200km from the North Pole. Its form will be directly related to Hieronymus Bosch’s Flood/Hell panels (Rotterdam, c.a.1510-20, thought to be Bosch’s last work). A presumed triptych, it is missing its enigmatic central panel. Adam’s ‘dialogue’ with the work re-envisions a replacement panel (screen) from Svalbard that develops via montage across the wings in constellations of past and future cinematic tenses. With this he explores climate change and the Anthropocene in a landscape that’s warming four times faster than the rest of our planet.