The ALMA Project
Antarctic Laboratory for Modern Art ©
The 2048 Antarctic agenda will witness the reopening of negotiations on the exploitation of mineral resources. There will then be a very strong pressure from the economic and financial sectors. To counterbalance this pressure, law, science, and civil society will have a fundamental role to play. As in 1991, when the Convention on Regulation of Antarctic Mineral Resource Activities was abandoned in favor of the Environmental Protocol to the Antarctic Treaty, civil society can organize now for long-term action.
Objective: To contribute to the protection of Antarctic values, inform and raise awareness. The Antarctic Treaty System (ATS) is the only one in the world to operate at an international level on the basis of consensus for 60 years in regards to its unique, fragile, wide continent and ocean. Despite the difficulties encountered throughout its history and challenges, it is a model that conveys strong values of peace, science and environmental protection. As such, Antarctica vehicles a very strong symbol as the best preserved area on Earth. Protecting the most pristine area of our planet is a continuous reality and a symbol that goes beyond the only Antarctic region and radiates worldwide.
Proposal: ALMA - the Antarctic Laboratory for Modern Art ©: a novel tool to bring energy, creativity and action for environmental goals. So far, Antarctic art mostly concentrates on historical heritage via the preservation of historical artifacts, literature, paintings and photography. Based on this experience, ALMA could go beyond and integrate the most innovative artists to promote Antarctic values. It could be an experimental high quality place to promote exploration in a wider perspective. Etymologically, “alma” means “soul”, comforting this idea of awareness.
The concept of ALMA © is to use the latest art forms and modern technologies to stimulate the 5 human senses in order to increase the perception one can have of Antarctica. Following this approach, the body and mind are means of integration, knowledge and awareness. Having integrated polar sensations of pristine areas through an art experience, the visitor would become an ambassador of Antarctic values.
Resolution 2(1996) on “Aesthetic values of Antarctica” adopted by the Antarctic Treaty Parties, states:
Noting that Antarctica has been the subject of significant works of art, literature and music;
Recognising that the unique character of Antarctica itself represents an inspiration for protecting its values;
Promotion of understanding and appreciation of the values of Antarctica, in particular its scientific, aesthetic and wilderness values, including through:
a) Educational opportunities, in particular for young persons, and
b) The contribution of writers, artists and musicians.
This initiative was recently reaffirmed by Resolution 5(2013), which highlighted the importance of “the inspiration of young people” and recommend that “Parties be encouraged to promote the dissemination of knowledge about Antarctica through the development of art projects about Antarctica on the basis of international cooperation, to reflect, in particular, scientific activity and the importance of the preservation of the Antarctic environment”.
Through the implementation of these resolutions, ALMA would tackle an innovative sector in Antarctica.
Benefits for the community: Because the values of Antarctica are recognized at an international level, ALMA should gather independent artists from all over the world. This would benefit to the continuous awareness of populations in many different countries, and especially to the young generation, to the artists themselves, and to the host city. As sponsor of this project, the host city would benefit from a novel project using art to realize long term environmental goals. As such, the host city would be a pioneer in implementing an Antarctic law sector still under estimated and would promote Antarctic modern art not only at a state scale but also worldwide. With the ALMA concept, the host city would be a very special link to live the Antarctic experience through art, with no environmental impact.
More about International Law for Antarctica:
GUYOMARD AI: La protection de l’environnement en Antarctique, droit international et droit comparé, Université de Droit et des Sciences Politiques de Nantes, Centre de Droit Maritime et Océanique, 2010.
GUYOMARD AI: La protection du patrimoine culturel en Antarctique, in The Cultural Heritage of Manking, Académie de Droit International de La Haye, Brill, 2008.
GUYOMARD AI: Bioprospecting in Antarctica : a new challenge for the Antarctic Treaty System, in Biotechology and International Law, Francioni and Scovazzi, Hart Publishing, 2006.