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Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 March, 2005, 18:37 GMT
Gormley highlights climate change
Antony Gormley's ice sculpture - copyright David Buckland
The snowman ice sculpture will last just three months
The artist behind the Angel of the North statue has turned his hand to building a snowman in the Arctic.

Antony Gormley, a former Turner Prize-winner, went to the Arctic with environmental project Cape Farewell.

He joined fellow artist Rachel Whiteread, author Ian McEwan and nine other artists invited on the journey to raise awareness of climate change.

Gormley worked in conditions of -32 degrees to complete the ice sculpture that will last just three months.

Extreme conditions

David Buckland, an artist and organiser of Cape Farewell, told the BBC News website: "Antony worked outside 12 hours a day for four days and he produced some phenomenal work.

"All of the artists are concerned about the way the climate is changing, and it is a concern they have as people as well as artists.

"The trip offered them some way of using their art to raise awareness of climate change or just celebrate how beautiful the world is and how we should care for it, not destroy it."

Gormley, Whiteread and McEwan embarked on the expedition on 6 March where they joined the ship, the Noorderlicht, locked in ice at Tempelfjorden - just north of the 79th parallel.

The 20-strong group of artists, scientists and journalists worked for six days in extreme conditions.

Antony Gormley - copyright David Buckland
Sculptor Gormley worked in temperatures of -32

It was the third expedition by Cape Farewell - which is named after the southernmost point of Greenland - since it began in May 2003.

The project aims "to bring education, science and the arts together through adventure and environmental awareness".

In the latest expedition, Whiteread, who won the 1993 Turner Prize for her concrete cast of the inside of a building, spent her time in the Artic walking, while McEwan wrote an essay on rescuing "the Earth from our own depredations".

Art exhibitions inspired by all the Cape Farewell visits so far are planned for next year, including one at the National History Museum, London from May until August 2006.

A spokeswoman for the Arts Council said that while they had supported Cape Farewell in the past and would continue to do so, the latest trip was funded entirely with private money.

The project has received grants totalling more than 75,000 over the last two years from the Council.

A spokeswoman said: "We are very excited to be involved in the Cape Farewell project."

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