2 December 2012 – 26 January 2013
Millennium Court Arts Centre, Portadown

The Frozen Laboratory: There is a powerful trope associated with Antarctica portraying it as blank, politically neutral pristine territory.  It is free from a history of warfare and turmoil.  Its environment is uncompromisingly resistant to permanent human habitation and colonisation.  In 1959 the Antarctic Treaty was signed with the entire continent a science reserve and ensuring that no one country could claim sovereignty.  Antarctica may therefore be viewed as the world’s largest living laboratory.  Lake Ellsworth, which is the site for drilling by a British team this winter 2012, lies beneath the continental ice sheet in West Antarctica and it is hoped that the ancient water therein will reveal information about the earth, life and the environment.

To coincide with the exploration of sub-glacial Lake Ellsworth in Antarctica this winter Millennium Court Arts Centre presents Crystalline, an exhibition of work by both internationally known artists and local practicing artists, graduates & postgraduates living or working throughout Northern Ireland.  The exhibition incorporates pieces submitted through Open Submission and by invitation.  The work explores the twin themes of scientific endeavour and the landscape of Antarctic, the latter of which has proved unfalteringly seductive to artists.  Working in various disciplines the artists represented in Crystalline cover many facets of Antarctic exploration, teasing out aspects of the barren terrain of the surface, seemingly devoid of colour, sound and life, and the inverted landscape of the sub-glacial underworld.

The exhibtion was selected by Jackie Barker, Arts Director MCAC, Geraldine Boyle, Exhibitions Officer MCAC, Peter Richards, Director of Golden Thread Gallery and Deidre Robb, Visual Arts Officer, Arts Council of Northern Ireland

Exhibiting artists include:
Dorothy Cross . Heather Fleming . Damien Flood . Ruth le Gear . David Hamilton . Mark Joyce . Belinda Loftus . Claire Muckian . Kathryn & Roy Nelson . Joanne Proctor . Anna Marie Savage . Jana Winderen . Shelby Woods