Date(s) - March 30, 2019
March 30 – April 4, 2019 | Robert W. Hoffert Learning Center
In collaboration with SoGES
The Color of Ice carries viewers on a journey of the imagination, traveling through over 200,000 years of earth’s past and between both poles. Along the way, logic and emotion, utility and beauty, science and art, and even space and time merge to one in an unexpected world of ice. The photographs of The Color of Ice demonstrate how a seemingly mundane object of the natural world cedes to the marvelous and the unpredictable when viewed in a new light. And yet with every light a shadow is cast, and we are reminded that the limitless bounds of the imagination remain in immutable ways tethered to a fragile physical world.
Ice, like photography, has the remarkable ability to stop time. Researchers have tapped into this phenomenon by drilling ice cores deep into the polar ice caps. Layer by layer, air bubbles trapped within the ice yield clues about earth’s ancient atmosphere. Until now, however, only a handful of researchers have ever seen such ice. This project breaks new ground by sharing never-before-seen photographs taken at the National Science Foundation Ice Core Facility in Denver, Colorado.
The Color of Ice presents paired photographs that travel through time and in which the intricate cracked textures of ancient ice captured in black and white yield to an unlikely and unprecedented explosion of pattern and color under polarized light. A product of science, this special light helps pinpoint the location of trapped air bubbles. Yet the resulting colors bear no scientific significance or value, and thus the cold logic and utility of science melts into the beautiful and the sublime.
Mimicking the powerful forces of glaciers that literally capture and compress time within their ice, a final image merges multiple photographs from this project into one, thereby capturing and compressing over 200,000 years into a single visual representation, erasing the very boundaries of time itself.