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Creating Nansen’s Pastport

September 16, 2020 @ 2:00 pm 3:00 pm

Anneli Skaar

The Nansen Passport was a passport devised for stateless peoples and refugees in 1922 in post-Great War Europe by Norwegian polar explorer, scientist, diplomat, and humanitarian Fridtjof Nansen. Ironically, the unknown regions of the far north that Nansen explored in his youth are today directly connected with climate disruption and sea level rise as well as the far-reaching humanitarian issues that accompany them. How are Nansen’s creative solutions to the great humanitarian crises of his day relevant to the issues of human displacement and migration that we face tomorrow? 

Join artist Anneli Skaar as she discusses the artistic inspiration behind Nansen’s Pastport. The book is a creative reimagining inspired by the Nansen passport, using Nansen’s own words from past writings to inspire empathy and diplomatic solutions in our own time. The presentation will address some of the historical context of the original Nansen passport, the history of the standardized international passport which celebrates its centennial on October 21, 2020, and explain the thoughts and process behind all the creative elements included in this fine press edition published by Two Ponds Press. This book is in the United Nations Library in Geneva and in the Rare Book and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress, as well as libraries and private collections both nationally and internationally.  

Ken Shure and Liv Rockefeller of Two Ponds Press are devoted to celebrating and reinventing the fine art press, rooted in the traditions of classic fine printing combined with exploring the possibilities of contemporary technologies. 

Anneli Skaar is a Norwegian-American artist and designer with a B.A. from the Norwegian National Academy of the Arts. She has drawn inspiration from studies from Svalbard to Greenland, and has produced several articles and lectures on arctic subjects. Skaar lives in mid-coast Maine and is the Creative Director for the Farnsworth Art Museum. 

Cost: $10, Free for members.