Rescue Blanket for Kebnekaise, 2015
Bigert & Bergström are conducting a new geo-engineering performance on top of the highest mountain peak in Sweden. A 500 sq. m reflective golden cloth was deployed on the mountain’s south peak on the evening of this year’s summer solstice. In the past few decades, the south peak, mainly consisting of a glacier, has been melting due to a warmer climate. Now the rocky north peak threatens to take over as the highest point in Sweden. By the end of last summer, the south peak was measured at 2097.7 m – just 0.7 meters higher that the rocky north peak. Every day up to 100 people climb the south peak and the question is what will happen if they aim for the north peak instead. Reaching the north peak is much more difficult and will probably result in more serious climbing accidents. The performance was inspired by the attempts to halt the melting of the Rhone glacier. Every summer, large areas of the glacier are covered with reflective cloth, which has successfully saved 3 meters of glacial ice every summer. Rescue Blanket for Kebnekaise is part of Bigert & Bergström’s new exhibition project The Freeze, which follows on the heels of the previous projects The Storm, 2012, and The Drought, 2013, both focusing on man-made attempts to control increasingly aggressive climate and weather phenomena. The project will initially be shown at Gallery Belenius Nordenhake in Stockholm in January 2016.