ShoreZone puts the Arctic on display

A new Coastal Impressions exhibit was unveiled at the Alaska Marine Science Symposium in January. Coastal Impressions: A Photographic Journey along Alaska’s Arctic Coast, featured dozens of spectacular photos from the Arctic leg of the Alaska ShoreZone Mapping Program, taken along 10,000 km (6,000 mi) of shoreline during 2012 and 2013. Dozens of vivid, large format aerial images of the beautiful Beaufort Sea to St. Lawrence Island landscape lined the walls of the Captain Cook Hotel and were a definite highlight of the symposium. This collection is the second Coastal Impressions exhibit inspired by the ShoreZone habitat mapping program first initiated in Alaska as a Cook Inlet RCAC pilot project in 2001.

It became clear during the Gulf of Alaska aerial surveys, that the images are worthy of any art exhibit. And much like the first exhibit sponsored by us (Cook Inlet RCAC), named  Coastal Impressions: A Photographic Journey along Alaska’s Gulf Coast, the images were not just selected for their interest to coastal scientists, but also for their artistic composition, amazing colors, odd shapes, or interesting features. Both exhibits leave viewers with an appreciation for how coastal landforms develop and the significance of these features within broader coastal ecosystems. Each image has a story to tell, and interpretive materials accompany each collection.

Future plans are to bring the newest exhibit to coastal villages in the Arctic for outreach with the schools and community members. An expert knowledgeable about  Coastal Impressions will travel with the exhibit. Coastal Impressions booklets will be provided and presentations if requested. The exhibit will also be available for other venues such as conferences, galleries, and museums. As well, we continue to provide the Gulf of Alaska exhibit and were most recently asked to display a subset of the exhibit at the April Kodiak Island Marine Science Symposium. The new Arctic Coastal Impressions exhibit is sponsored by Bureau of Ocean Energy and Management (BOEM), National Park Service (NPS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and Arctic Landscape Conservation Cooperative (ALCC), and developed in partnership with NOAA Fisheries Auke Bay Laboratories, Cook Inlet Regional Citizens Advisory Council, and Coastal and Ocean Resources, Inc.