Polarriggen • Spitsbergen



• image code: SOT06
• a solargraphy near Polariggen, Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen
• exposure time 55 days
GPS location 78°13’19.0″N 15°38’00.3″E

When you are in Longyearbyen one of the oldest and unique places to stay is Polarriggen Boutique Hotel, set up in 1999 by Mary-Ann Dahle. Sadly Mary-Ann has passed away, but the hotel is still breathing arctic authenticity. When I was looking for partners to work with in this photo series, Mary-Ann did not hesitate to help out. I was allowed to create images around the location of the hotel and the staff gave me a warm welcome and were an excellent guide and warm host to my first steps in the arctic desert. This place breathes creativity, there is even a ship-turned lodging place on the lot and in this image you see the gate at the entrance. The way I recorded it, you will hardly recognise it when you are present,  but that was the idea. This image became like a ladder towards the sky, as far north as you are here, you are almost to a dead end at the end of the world. The only way is up.

If you buy a fine art print or limited edition of this image, 10% of the profit will be donated to APECS. This is an organisation which supports early career scientists in their research. Many members of APECS helped me in creating the images in the Touch base project. We all depend on future science. By donating some of my earnings I can do something back to support them.


Mark Haanstra & Oene van Geel have created a music album named after the photo series, Shapes of time. Each photo was an inspiration for a music composition. Shapes of time is also a performed with the photographs translated to animated backgrounds.

Extra info

The image will be printed onto Hahnemühle Natural Line Fine Art Paper based on hemp and using the Epson Sure Color Printing technique.


Shapes of time, album
Shapes of time, project
SEES Scientific expedition
Dutch arctic station


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