photo © Simon Norfolk


COMING TO UNSEEN AMSTERDAM: Shroud, Rhône Glacier, Switzerland

With climate change standing as one of the most pressing issues facing our future, photography is being increasingly used as a catalyst to create the positive reaction required to instigate change. I just returned from a trip to Switzerland with Klaus Thymann of @projectpressure to photograph the Rhône Glacier in southern Switzerland, which is disappearing at a colossal rate. • Because there is a small shop there that carves an ice grotto into the glacier and charges tourists to experience inside the blue ice, it has been worth their money attempting to slow the glacier’s retreat. They have invested heavily in a special thermal blanket that has kept about 25m (82ft, in depth) of ice from disappearing, and has kept the ice grotto intact. • However, after a few harsh winters on the mountain, the blanket is starting to disintegrate. And unfortunately the method is not scaleable: we cannot do this to all the world’s ice; the gesture is as forlorn and doomed as the glacier itself. So with heavy lament, this glacier, which has existed for millennia,will die within the lifetime of children born today.

• This image will appear as part of a series at UNSEEN (@unseenplatform) in Amsterdam, 21-23 September 2018.

• Image:Shroud, Rhône Glacier, Switzerland, 2018 by Norfolk + Thymann

Photo by @simonnorfolkstudio and @klausthymann