Friday 10 June 2011

The ice bear melteth

Sydney ice bear

I had a bit of time on my hands today, so I shot down to Circular Quay to see what was left of the "amazing" melting ice bear. Obviously, I got there a bit too late. Like a day late.

Sydney ice bear

I love this bit:

How did you create the sculpture? 
The construction started in my studio by creating a plaster sculpture of a polar bear's skeleton. It was cast into bronze in the UK. We then made a waterproof box around the skeleton and the whole thing then went into an industrial-scale freezer. The freeze takes six weeks at minus 25 degrees. The sculpture at this stage weighs 11 tonnes. The block is then transported to the exhibition place, and there my team and I carve it into the polar bear. 
So in order to raise awareness of global warming, they use a massive amount of energy to freeze a huge block of ice; then they FLY that block of ice half way around the world (along with a team of carvers and publicists). They then hang around to do some TV interviews, then FLY home and start all over again.

previous appearances have been in Copenhagen, London, Toronto, Montreal and Manchester.
I think it would have been more appropriate if they'd parked a tanker at Circular Quay loaded with 50,000 litres of avgas and pumped that into a massive blow torch - that would have represented some of the fuel that this mob have used carting 11 tonnes of ice around the world by air a  number of times.

Sydney ice bear

Ironically, the ice bear sat between two outdoor cafes outside Customs House. As it was bloody freezing, each cafe had at least a dozen gas heaters going full blast to stop the patrons from getting frostbite. I could feel the heat from those gas heaters when I was standing next to the ice bear.

Sydney cargo bike

I also walked past this nifty cargo bike - not sure if I'm ready to lug the shopping home in one of these.


Brian said...

Those heaters came in handy to dry my wet arse after a jet boat ride last winter.
And you are right, someone should do an inventory of the gas all those outdoor restaurants and bars use.
They are all over the place in Canada too.

Wand said...

..."then they FLY that block of ice half way around the world"

I wondered about that -- and the thing made it through Customs! Customs must have been generous. Or does that mean that no microbe or nasty could live in the ice block to possibly infest Circular Quay with some pandemic after the ice melts?
I wonder how the people who sucked on the ice are feeling?

Just musing ....