Chris Linder Photography - Science and Natural History Storytelling

Exhibits » Arctic Seafloor

Exploring the Arctic Seafloor:
Photographs by Chris Linder

Embark on an expedition to the bottom of an ice-covered ocean– thirty photographs and other media take you on an icebreaking ship through the frozen Arctic world, and give you a first-ever look at mysterious undersea mountains near the North Pole.

Deep beneath Arctic ice and miles of sunless water lie what are arguably the remotest places on earth: awe-inspiring ranges of unexplored volcanic mountains more foreign than the surface of Mars. But recently, an international team led by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution set out to plumb the secrets of this Arctic seafloor. Using ingeniously invented robotic divers, the expedition set out for the Gakkel Ridge, parts of which seethe with geysers escaping from beneath the ocean bottom. What strange life forms would the expedition find in such extreme conditions, living off super-heated fluids spurting from beneath the seafloor?

Color photographs, a sample of rock from the ocean floor, a computer kiosk, and a 3-D model of underwater mountains portray this expedition's quest, its exploratory equipment, and the extraordinary work of the scientists aboard the ship.

This exhibition was created by Chris Linder, with the collaborative assistance of The Field Museum and graphics professionals at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Funding for this exhibit was provided through the Live from the Poles grant, awarded by the National Science Foundation and the Richard King Mellon Foundation.

Learn more

  • Live from the Poles / Polar Discovery - The photos for this exhibition were taken as part of the Live from the Poles project. Read daily dispatches and see more photos from this expedition at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution's Polar Discovery Expedition 2 website.

Listen to Chris talk about the exhibit photos in this 8-minute flash slideshow, or simply view the images by clicking on the navigation bar.


Interested in hosting?

  • Contact - Chris is currently handling the scheduling for the exhibit.
  • Components - The exhibit includes 29 framed photos (frame sizes: 5 @ 48"h x 68"w, 2 @ 56"h x 40"w, and 22 @ 24"h x 32"w), 2 framed mosaics of the seafloor (frame size: 28"h x 68"w), 5 interpretive panels (36"h x 24"w), a 3' wide x 6' long 3D foam model of the Gakkel Ridge with base and protective vitrine case, and a multimedia kiosk showcasing more photos and videos from the expedition.


  • August 14, 2008 - Icy light, Beaver County Times, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Resources and links

IPY logo

Funding for the Live from the Poles project and this exhibit was provided by the National Science Foundation and the Richard King Mellon Foundation.

WHOI logo

The Arctic Seafloor expedition was led by a team of researchers from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the world's largest private, nonprofit ocean research, engineering and education organization.

FM logo

The exhibit was created by Chris Linder with the collaborative assistance of the Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois and graphics professionals at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

IPY logo

The Live from the Poles project is an officially sanctioned project of the International Polar Year.