The Ongoing Line (2011–) evocatively links the natural particularities of Antarctica (terra nullius), namely its ice sheet and an adjacent dry-glacier – the unique environment of the continent, lacking in variety and existing in a laconic state, facilitates insight into the greater global environment and the interrelation of its components.
The project begins with the process of laying magenta colorant* on a glacier which is in suitable proximity to the accommodation base. The colorant must be applied on the glacier’s snow accumulation zone (above the equilibrium line altitude) where snow is still dry, through precise manual dispersion. The coloured surface is intended to cross the glacier perpendicularly and define a slender strip along its entire width; the extent of the strip width depending on the scale of the selected glacier. After the seasonal snowfalls, the strip will remain under the new layers of snow and will in time be engulfed by the glacier, becoming one of its structural layers.
Depending on the various climatic changes influencing the dynamics of the glacier, the coloured strip will reemerge as a narrow ‘horizontal’ line/drawing at the terminus (end/front) of the glacier, between its layers of ice and pyroclasts, eventually remaining in the structure of the torn-away icebergs. The laid colorant is the starting point of a (suspense) process that will continue for an undetermined period until ‘the completion’/’the realisation’ of the work.
An essential element of the work is that it does not provide a finished object. Its appearance will be delayed until an unforeseen moment in the future as a result of natural processes and human activities on a global scale. In this way, the project and the future work are free from the practices of rational integration in the product positioning of the ‘object’ and the act of materialisation of the certain (art) action into a concrete result here and now. Ongoing Line is a project, which provides grounds/opportunity for considering the ‘object’ related to its existence between the transience and time. The work comments on the assumption of what an ‘object’ is and how it comes to be and how it is ‘used.’
In addition to the work itself, accompanying video installation work will be realised in collaboration with cinematographer and artist Trevor Tweeten. While this work is not intended to be a direct documentation of the process of laying the magenta colorant, it will focus on the theme of suspense inherent in the project.
*So far, the magenta’s colorant type and the particular method of implementation were consulted and tested in 2011-2012, with experts from the Departments of Chemistry and Physics (some of whom have been on dozens of Antarctic expeditions over the past 30 years) of Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski. The current and future collaborations with experts and specialists from directly and indirectly related fields and disciplines are the project’s vital component; and moreover, genuine opportunity. This includes different aspects of the realisation; the environmentally friendly colorant (with high photo-stability), the method of implementation and the location, to be obtained.
© Copyright Kiril Kuzmanov