Jane Lombard Gallery is pleased to present Antarctica, the first solo exhibition in New York City for internationally renowned artists Lucy + Jorge Orta. Working in partnership at their Studio Orta in Paris since 1991, Lucy and Jorge’s collaborative practice addresses universal concerns such as community, shelter, migration, and ecological and social sustainability to create artworks employing diverse media, issues particularly prescient in today’s social climate. Multi-part works are often developed in series over many years, each reinforcing their mission “to help change people’s attitudes and habits, activate debate…and even change current legislation.” With the Antarctica project, Antarctic Village – No Borders, Lucy + Jorge Orta focus their humanitarian and artistic efforts to a specific geographic location as an emblem for global issues.

Antarctica is based on the Ortas’ 2007 expedition to the Antarctic peninsula where they created a temporary “village” of domelike tents to highlight the efforts of those struggling to cross borders and gain the freedom of movement necessary to escape conflict or natural disaster. Preserved as an area for scientific research with aims to protect the environment and to encourage international cooperation by the 1959 Antarctic Treaty, Antarctica embodies utopia: a continent whose extreme climate encourages mutual aid and solidarity, freedom of research, sharing, and collaboration for the good of the planet.

Each Dome Dwelling, one of which will be on display, is made from flags from nations around the world and affixed with clothes and gloves, further symbolizing the multiplicity and diversity of people and the freedom of crossing borders. Drop Parachutes and Life-Line – Survival Kit, two other major elements of the series, incorporate dueling points of view: help is urgently needed/help has arrived. Laden with the tools of survival, they signal urgency and emergency.

The core of the project and the centerpiece of the exhibition is The Antarctic World Passport Delivery Bureau (2008-ongoing), an architectural structure built with reclaimed materials recently installed at the Nansen Initiative Global Consultation in Geneva and the Grand Palais in Paris during the COP21 Climate Summit. This public engagement artwork invites visitors to collect their personalized edition of the Antarctica World Passport (1995-ongoing),

With over 55,000 passports now in circulation, The Antarctica World Passport, mobilizes the citizens of the world to take action against the disastrous effects of global warming and strive for peace. Each individual passport affirms that “every human being has the right to move freely and cross frontiers to their chosen territory,” and proposes an amendment to Article 13 of the 1948 Declaration of Human Rights: “Individuals should not be deemed of an inferior status to that of capital, trade, telecommunication, and pollution, all of which have no boundaries.” In a time of increasing concerns of social mobility the work has a particular resonance.

The studios of Lucy Orta (b. Sutton Coldfield, UK, 1966) and Jorge Orta (b. Rosario, Argentina, 1953) are located in central Paris and Les Moulins, a cultural complex founded by the artists along an 8km stretch of the Grand Morin Valley in Seine-et-Marne. Amongst their most emblematic series are: Refuge Wear / Body Architecture: portable minimum habitats bridging architecture and dress; HortiRecycling / 70 x 7 The Meal: the local and global food chain and the ritual of community dining; Nexus Architecture: alternative modes of establishing the social link; OrtaWater / Clouds: water scarcity and the problems arising from pollution and corporate control; and Amazonia: the value of the natural environment to our daily lives and to our survival. Their artwork has been the focus of important survey exhibitions, including: The Curve, Barbican Art Gallery, London (2005); Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa, Venice Biennale (2005); Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (2006); Biennial of the End of the World, Ushuaia, Antarctic Peninsula (2007); Hangar Bicocca spazio d’arte, Milan (2008); Natural History Museum, London (2010); MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts, Rome and Shanghai Biennale (2012); Yorkshire Sculpture Park (2013); Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Ithaca and Parc de la Villette, Paris (2014); London Museum Ontario (2015).