Peter Cosier - Albatross Over Cumberland Bay, South Georgia Island, 2018

Albatross Over Cumberland Bay, South Georgia Island, 2018

Peter Cosier

Description:  This photo was taken aboard the Bark Europa at 5.30am on day 17, soon after we departed Grytviken.  It was a beautiful morning with calm weather and clear skies, as a Light Mantled Sooty Albatross floated effortlessly by.

It is hard to conceive that Cumberland Bay, a place so remote and so peaceful, was once witness to the slaughter of thousands upon thousands of penguins, seals and whales over a 70 year period dating back to the early 1900s - in a land so totally foreign to humans, yet so natural to them.

Camera: Nikon D850, 50mm lens, ISO 200, f5.6, 1/2000 sec.

Print Medium:  Hand printed on Canson Infinity Platine Fibre Rag 310gsm photopaper on an Epson P800 Inkjet Printer, using Quadtone software and Ultrachrome HD pigment inks.

The Landscapes of South Georgia Island

Peter’s interest in photography began at boarding school in the 1970s, where he came second in the Sydney Morning Herald Secondary Schools Photographic Competition.  He then engaged in sports photography to help pay his way through university and later took some commercial work.  Peter’s career then moved into environmental policy where he built a long and distinguished career in natural resource management and land use planning. 

He is a founding Member of the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists, the Chair of a not-for-profit called Accounting for Nature, and a Director of the Tasmanian Land Conservancy.  In a former life Peter was a Policy Adviser to the Australian Environment Minister.  In 2017 he received a University of New England Distinguished Alumni Award for his long-standing commitment to improving land and water management in Australia.

Peter’s interest in landscape photography began in earnest in the 1980s after seeing an exhibition of Ansel Adams in Sydney.  He was captured by the spirituality of these amazingly beautiful black and white images and this led to a long standing interest in large format photography.

It was in that time that he also took an interest in Antarctica and South Georgia Island.

Ten years ago an opportunity presented itself for Peter to make his first visit to South Georgia.  With the help of some outstanding film makers, story tellers and music experts, he used that voyage to produce a ‘home movie’, titled “One Summer Dream”.  This 50 minute documentary told the story of Ernest Shackleton, and used the heroic exploration era as a metaphor for climate change and humanities impact on the natural world.  Peter’s documentary was shown at the State Library of NSW, and at the Sydney Theatre Company.

en years later, in November 2018, Peter boarded a 100 year old tall ship the ‘Bark Europa’ in Montevideo with his colleague Bruce Male, to embark on a 39 day sailing expedition to South Georgia Island and the Antarctic Peninsula.  They wanted to experience what it might have been like for those explorers 100 years ago, and Peter wanted to fulfill his life long mission to capture the drama and scale of this unique landscape, this time in the classic tradition of black and white landscape photography. 

They got a lot more than he bargained for:  eight metre seas, 50 knot gale-force winds, torn sails, injured and seasick passengers and crew.  This exhibition is a product of that voyage.

Peter’s fine art black and white images seek to capture the sense of this surreal isolation this island imposes on its visitors.  They are primarily from a 47 megapixel digital camera that was purchased specifically for the trip.  Each print for the exhibition was printed by Peter, using specialist Quadtone software to add a rich tone to his traditional black and white interpretations of this remarkable landscape.

Please notePrints are made to order. Please allow 10-15 business days for your delivery.


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