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“What’s it like to live in Antarctica?” Anthony Powell’s movie “ANTARCTICA – A YEAR ON ICE” gives us a vivid video view and a wonderfully emotional exposure to a unique reality that makes you feel deeply that you wish you had lived there, but also thankful you didn’t experience a whole year there in person. The warmth of the people doing important but routine work is balanced with nature’s piercing cold, terrifying winds, embalming darkness, and overpowering majesty. Powell aims, and succeeds, at capturing, “the true feeling of this vast and important place.” From his video’s opening scene (time mark 0:00:47) he states he grew up in an idyllic dairy farm setting near lat/lon -39.5 174.2 (Enter these coordinates in Google Earth and click the photo to see that location).

Visually sensitive people will revel in the eerie time-lapse videos of the vast variety of forms and movements that nature’s water can take when frozen. Water can become an infinity of solid gargoyle shapes, or when blown high it can become flowing nacreous clouds of spirit vapors. Below are some still photos taken from his movie, but these are stills frozen from Powell’s mysterious moving things pulsing with their unique forms of energy. They are similar to living things, but so different from our DNA form of life that each of these energy forms seems like it should have its own taxonomic designation enfolding within it Linnaeus’ tree of life. I would base this phylogenetic system on methods of energy usage of the fundamental forces of nature. Note below nature’s usage of energy and light.

Wind blow ice sculptures

Antarctic ice formations by Anthony Powell

Antarctic Moonscape with clouds

Nacreous clouds and the Moon over McMurdo, Antarctica, by Anthony Powell

View of twilight sky from Antarctica

The constellation Orion is seen standing on his head in Antarctica, by Anthony Powell

To live in Antarctica they say, “To be tolerant is very important.” “You may get to see some fun stuff, but the main thing you are down here for, is to work.” “I still love that there are places in the world you can go, and there is no one out here, and there is absolute silence.” (0:15:35) They say, “The women of Antarctica? … The odds are good, but the goods are odd.” (0:20:22)

Powell returns from the purposefulness and boredom, violence and tranquility of Antarctica to the scattered busyness of Christchurch,  for a melancholy overview of modern civilization and cities.

Christchurch, New Zealand

View of the city Christchurch NZ by Anthony Powell from lat/lon -43.582 172.725

A year on ice will open your spirit to understand more soulfully where you now live.

 

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