The Arctic – Time Change – Gautier Deblonde

From the series Arctic by Gautier Deblonde

I came across the work of Gautier Deblonde by way of Granta 101 in a photographic essay: “The Arctic”.    (The series “Voyage to Spitsbergen” can be seen on the site – nbpictures – and it is worth checking out…)The photographs in the series (Arctic) are meant to “serve as a reminder to people that our climate is changing, and that without a doubt it will affect them personally and profoundly, wherever they live. “

From the series Artic by Gautier Deblonde

From the series Arctic by Gautier Deblonde

I appreciate the sense of time in the photographs above. Why would one live up above the Arctic Circle these days – except in search of something – Oil? Natural Gas? – Scientists studying the ice? What has happened to this train?  Why is it here – and abandoned in this way – this place called the Spitsbergen ?  Near to the summer solstice as we are right now… with our sunrise / sunsets so early and late – seemingly – I’m trying hard to imagine what it must feel like to be in perpetual daylight for some 2 months straight in “Midsummer” – or the opposite – darkness in “Midwinter”…

How attuned to the natural rhythms of the day are we anymore?

Welcome to America’s Favorite Thrift Store!

Welcome to America’s Favorite Thrift Store!  © Matt Niebuhr

An interesting quote to consider from Smith’s The Wealth of Nations: “It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest. We address ourselves, not to their humanity but to their self-love, and never talk to them of our own necessities but of their advantages.”

Assuming that you might qualify, how will you choose to put your economic stimulus payment to good work?


Brian Ulrich has been doing a series on the theme for some time… above and this variation below is my take on it….

Group show – December 6, 2008 – January 2009

100 x 100 PHOTO organized by the Barcelona art gallery Espai [b]

“Every Season, Every Occasion, Every Day!” – Matt Niebuhr 2007

60 cm x 40 cm – on aluminum sheet

limited edition of 100

More information:

Village View Farm 1904 [West Central Iowa 2006]

One in a series entitled Portraits: Faces and Profiles of Utility

Pictured this way, this particular subject grouping becomes iconic – almost too much so perhaps. For me it is precisely this issue. This is the quintessential farmstead of 1904 pictured in 2006. Do we really see these farmsteads as symbols anymore or has this way of life receded into personal memory only?

More of my project work here: