Tag Archives: art

BEAR SPRAY: Artist ‘tags’ Svalbardbutikken with larger-than-life polar predator as part of weekend art exhibit


For Martin Whatson, the hardest part about “tagging” one of Longyearbyen’s most notable buildings in the minus 10 degrees Celsius cold isn’t incurring the wrath of the law (it’s not graffiti if city officials say it’s OK) or his spray paint cans freezing in the cold. Rather, due to how the cold affects the pressure in the cans, it means spraying much thinner droplets that are slow to dry.

“It’s much more drippy,” he said, making precise painting of his polar predator a predicament.

Hard core exhibition: ‘Kullfolk’ shows a rock-solid workforce, now nearly vanquished, to a new era of ‘soft people’


“Miners don’t like having their picture taken,” said Birger Amundsen, minutes before presenting a room filled with about 30 enormous portraits of the workers’ dirty faces from the past 25 years in Svalbard.

Furthermore, the longtime journalist and author said he’s sad to see the coal miners being replaced “soft people” in tourism, an industry “without a core,” but since the room of his photos is at Svalbard Museum it means most of the people looking at his exhibit will be – wait for it – tourists.

Minding the art: Tiny new museum more about concept than space, backers say

Kunsthall Svalbard

As with most art, it’s about more than meets the naked eye.

Physically, it’s a nearly empty meeting room with a video screen, a TV and a few small black-and-white paintings on one of the walls. But art lovers from Queen Sonja on down are calling the new Kunsthall Svalbard a profound statement about Longyearbyen’s future place in the world.