Life On The Line

New exhibition by Cristian Barnett running from November 2015 to January 2016.

From November 13th 2015 until January 6th 2016 we will be hosting the fantastic Life on the Line exhibition by Cristian Barnett.

Life on the line is a collection of unique portraits connecting and celebrating life along the Arctic Circle by photographer Cristian Barnett. A hardback book showcasing all the portraits Cristian took for this project will be available to buy from the gallery for the duration of the exhibition.

The project came about after he became intrigued by the arctic circle – a mysterious line that dissects apparently vast empty spaces.

An invisible line of latitude 66 degrees and 33 minutes north of the Equator, the Arctic Circle intersects eight countries and is home to a rich diversity of people for whom the sun never sets in high summer, nor rises in deepest winter.

Since 2006 the artist has made 13 trips in the Arctic, shooting in some twenty-three cities, towns and remote villages. Most of the portraits were photographed as close as humanly possible to the Arctic Circle, however some of the people and landscapes encountered were so extraordinary that Cristian extended his remit to include them. However, no portrait has been taken further than 35 miles (50km) outside of the Arctic Circle itself.

Cristian was honoured to spend time among so many Arctic people – the Gwichin, Saami, Khanti, Nenets, Evenks, Yakuts and Inuit – and clearly the Arctic Circle is much more than snow and polar bears. There are many thriving modern settlements where you are more likely to meet a hairdresser than a reindeer herder. There is much more diversity to life here than one might imagine.

Life on the Line celebrates the variety of existence in the circumpolar Arctic, in the face of overwhelming environmental and cultural change.

‘This is not a book about history, either of the North or photography. The journey of these photographs is through the modernity of life as it is lived along the Arctic Circle. Much is startling to those who live in the south, since for us it as an extreme world that we see here. But much is familiar. Everywhere people live with what the modern world has to offer, even if at times, and for profound reasons, they prefer or need to step into territories, of landscape, culture or the human imagination, that is outside and beyond modernity. As we look at these northern people looking out at us, we see both a welcome and fascination. This is the power and authority of these images, the remarkable achievement of a remarkable photographer.’ – Hugh Brody.

Posted: November 10, 2015 by Kate Vincent

Jacha’s art can be seen here: