Katarina Anthony during the Polarquest Arctic expedition. SUR
A unique opportunity to see local scientist's Arctic expedition

A unique opportunity to see local scientist's Arctic expedition

nerja ·

Katarina Anthony moved to Nerja with her family as a child and now works at CERN in Geneva, where she is involved in global scientific research projects

Friday, 27 January 2023, 10:45

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The Nerja Cultural Centre is offering a unique opportunity to watch a documentary about an Arctic expedition made in 2018 in which a local resident was involved.

Katarina Anthony will be presenting the documentary - Nanuq - An Arctic Journey from Past to Future - in person next Wednesday, 1 February. It is the second of two films made about the voyage undertaken in 2018.

The first was shown at the cultural centre in December 2019, with a view to showing the sequel in 2020, but the pandemic prevented this from happening until now.

Katarina is a 33-year-old Physics graduate who works as a communications manager on the ATLAS Experiment (perhaps more famously-known as the Large Hadron Collider) at CERN - European Organisation for Nuclear Research - in Geneva, Switzerland.

Katarina was born in the USA and spent some of her childhood in the Dominican Republic before her family moved to Nerja, where her mother is a doctor, when she was eight-years-old. She attended Almuñécar International School before going to Imperial College London to read Physics.

Katarina explains that although she is based in Geneva, she travels back to Nerja regularly to see her family and the town that she has called home since she was eight.

Film festival

Katarina will be travelling to Nerja from Lapland, where the documentary is being shown this weekend at the Skábmagovat 2023 Indigenous peoples film festival in Inari, Finland.

The documentary follows the Polarquest journey; an international team of arctic explorers and researchers who have an interest in the Arctic Ocean and its preservation.

In 2018, the team sailed from Iceland to the Svalbard archipelago, which belongs to Norway and is located above the Polar Arctic Circle, on board Nanuq - a 60-foot sailboat designed to sail in the polar regions.

The aim of the journey was twofold, explains Katarina. In part the team wanted to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the Italia airship disaster which happened in 1928, when it crashed on the way back from an early Arctic exploration led by the Italian aeronautical engineer and Arctic explorer, Umberto Nobile. The Polarquest team included descendants of both those who lost their lives, as well as survivors.

Katarina goes on to explain that the other aim of the expedition was to carry out scientific and environmental research. "It's a depressing reality that due to climate change it is now possible to access this area via the ocean," she says.

The team took samples of microplastics from the water and were also shocked by the amount of macroplastics they also found, "considering that it is an isolated area and far away from densely populated areas", she points out.

Katarina and the team returned to the Arctic in summer of 2021 to carry out further research.

The event starts at 7pm and Katarina will hold a Q and A session after the documentary. This will be followed by a screening of The Red Tent; the 1969 film based on the story of the 1928 mission to rescue Nobile and the other airship Italia survivors, starring Sean Connery. Tickets cost six euros and are available on the door of the cultural centre, Calle Granada, 45, Nerja.

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