BBC Radio 4: Arctic Special

Quentin Cooper joined Cape Farewell’s 2004 expedition circumnavigating Spitsbergen. From interviews and recordings made during the voyage he presented a 30-minute The Material World: Arctic Special, broadcast on BBC Radio 4.

glacier ice
Glacier ice at the foot of Kongsvegen Glacier. September 2004.

The Material World: Arctic Special
Presented by Quentin Cooper
Thursday 30 December 2004 on BBC Radio 4

Quentin Cooper, presenter of BBC Radio 4’s The Material World, joined Cape Farewell for the 2004 Art/Science expedition, circumnavigating Spitsbergen. From interviews and recordings made in the Arctic, Quentin presented a programme following the voyage. The Material World’s 30-minute Arctic Special was first broadcast on the 30 December 2004 on BBC Radio 4. Find out more about the program, archived on the BBC Radio4 website.

High up in the Arctic circle lies the archipelago of Svalbard, Quentin boards a two masted schooner “The Noorderlicht”. His fellow passengers are an assortment of scientists and artists. Together they embark on a circumnavigation of the main island of Spitsbergen as part of Cape Farewell’s expedition – in an attempt to use art and scientific method to highlight the effects of climate change in this delicate environment.

Oceanographers Simon Boxall and Sarah Fletcher, from the Southampton Oceanography Centre are there to measure the strength of the Gulf Stream. It’s in Svalbard where this powerful north Atlantic current sinks – part of the mechanism that drives the conveyor belt of warm water from the Gulf of Mexico to the north.

And there’s another gulf that’s being measured during the two week trip – the gulf between art and science. Quentin discovers that it isn’t so wide…

The Material World: Arctic Special – programme information
About the 2004 Art/Science expedition
About Quentin Cooper

Skip links

  1. Top
  2. Skip to content top
  3. Skip to main menu
  4. Skip to search