Bronze 2021 / Editorial / Environmental

Adrift In Fading Ice

  • Photographer
    Michael Gutsche
  • Agency / Studio
    Michael Gutsche Photography
  • Prizes
    Bronze in Editorial/Environmental

The German research icebreaker Polarstern drifts with the Arctic ice near the North Pole in February 2020. It served as the logistical hub for MOSAiC (Multidisciplinary drifting Observatory for the Study of Arctic Climate), the most extensive scientific expedition to the Arctic in history. Scientists from around the world collected invaluable in-situ data on the Arctic’s effect on global climate change. Climate experts predict that within thirty years, the polar ice will disappear during the summer. This may be among the last photographs of the Arctic icescape before it fades away forever.

Michael Gutsche is a German photographer who works with changing landscapes and global environmental issues. Gutsche’s work manifests in large-scale prints that have been featured in solo exhibitions at museums, galleries and institutions across Germany. In 2019, Gutsche was commissioned by the Alfred Wegener Institute from January to April 2020 as a photographer for MOSAiC, the largest scientific Arctic expedition in history. These images have been published in Focus, FAZ, Nature, and The Washington Post, among others. Instagram: @michaelgutschephotography