Who is Alex Hartley?
Nowhereisland is Hartley's 2012 Cultural Olympiad project for the South West of England. In 2004, whilst participating in a Cape Farewell Arctic expedition, Hartley discovered Nyskjæret, an island about the size of a football field, in the archipelago of Svalbard, a Norwegian territory in the Arctic Ocean. The island had been revealed from within the melting ice of a retreating glacier and Hartley was the first human to stand on it. He originally designed it Nymark and the Norwegian Polar Institute has since recognised the island as Nyskjæret and included it on all maps and charts subsequent to its discovery.
In September 2011 he returned to the island with permission from the Governor of Svalbard to declare territory from the island a new nation called Nowhereisland. As part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, the new nation of Nowhereisland, a floating island, will make the journey from the Arctic to the Weymouth on the Jurassic Coast and on to Bristol. The journey will begin on 25 July 2012 to coincide with the sailing events of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
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