Various Views Of The Arctic : The Picture Show Two photography exhibitions in Portland, Ore., show life and landscapes way up north.
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Various Views Of The Arctic

Olaf Otto Becker goes out of his way to make a photograph. He'll travel up to 10 hours carrying his weight in equipment to find the right location — then maybe even wait a few more hours for the right light. He's also using a large format film camera, which is pretty much the furthest thing from convenient. His photos of Greenland accompany Celine Clanet's series from Norway, currently at Blue Sky Gallery in Portland, Ore.

While Becker, who was trained as a painter, is interested in making visual documentation of a changing environment, Clanet is interested in people: her project documents Sami — people indigenous to Maze, a small Norwegian village above the Arctic Circle with a population of about 350.

In her artist statement, she writes:

Between 2005 and 2009, I traveled regularly to Maze, a small Sami village located at the highest point of the European map, far above the Arctic Circle, in Norwegian Lapland. There, I met quiet people, sometimes melancholic, captivating, very proud of their village and territory, of these landscapes they are constantly gazing at with binoculars they never separate from, even at home.

Read this conversation with Becker and this one with Clanet to learn more about their series. And check out Blue Sky Gallery to learn more about the exhibitions.

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