Jasmine Poole

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100 Years of Solitude

Photographic Series

"We had discovered an accursed country. We had found the Home of the Blizzard."

- Sir Douglas Mawson

Sometimes the most convincing portraits of human existence are to be found in what is left behind.

This series pays homage to those who have lost their lives in the name of research and exploration. 2011 marks the centenary of one of the most amazing tales of physical and mental endurance in recorded history. Led by Sir Douglas Mawson, the Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE) of 1911 was the first Australian-led expedition in Antarctica. It was an undertaking that would see the tragic demise of two of Mawson's expedition companions, Belgrave Ninnis and Xavier Mertz, to this day Commonwealth Bay, Antarctica remains their resting place. After the deaths of his two companions, and alone on the freezing icecap, Mawson himself was perilously close to death as he fought his way back to the hut that they had erected at Cape Denison as a base.

Mawson's Hut has endured for 100 years against fierce Katabatic winds that can reach speeds of up to 300km/h. The hut's contents remain untouched, with shelves lined with books, jars of food, clothes, shoes, alcohol and photographic supplies. Entering the space is the closest one can come to walking back in time.