Canadian artist Nicole Dextras has created an amazing series of three-dimensional words fabricated by hand in ice. The installations, “speak to how the viewer’s gaze frames and informs the landscape. The installations have varied from 8-foot high ice letters on the Yukon River to 18-inch high letters set in downtown Toronto.”
The letters are then left to let the temperature of the space to affect their meaning, altering their scope through the melting process.
There are also a collection of process photos, demonstrating how Dextras and her team were able to create the sculptures:
The artist says,
The use of text in the landscape relates to concrete and visual poetry but with the added twist of having the word’s meaning alter with the melting process. Sometimes the words relate directly to the landscape such as “silence” where the bucolic idealism of nature is transformed by the sound of the crashing waves behind it…
The visual poetry in this series aims to subvert the authority of the English language and the commerce of signage by representing words as vulnerable and shifting. Ice Typography absorbs light, melts and eventually leaves no trace; these words have more in common with dreams and oral stories than linear language. Words cast in ice interrupt our literal narratives, allowing a more integrated reading of the land we inhabit, as opposed to the past and current commodification of land as limitless resource. This fundamental split in perception lies at the crux of our environmental crisis. I therefore choose to create within an ephemeral vernacular to accentuate the collective physical and psychological experience of flux and change.
Also, be sure to check out Sonja Hinrichsen’s Snow Drawings
Ice Typography – Winter [Nicole Dextras]