Whether your view on islands is more John Donne, than Dolly Parton, the Nowhere Island project is sure to raise a few eyebrows.
The trick with the project, said the Nowhere Island logbook after the team visited Plymouth, is to get the right balance of whimsical and serious, and sure enough the whole thing seems seriously whimsical.
Nowhere Island is a piece of land that has revealed by the retreating Arctic, part of which will be dragged down to the south coast to celebrate the cultural Olympiad. As soon as the land hits international waters it will become a nation and the the project is asking people to become citizens of the floating island. Citizens will be able to influence the direction – both political and physical – of the island as it makes its journey.
With eco-champions in the form of the Eden Projects Tim Smit and foody fellow Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall you’d expect the credentials to be right on.
To help imagine the project, think a bit of rock from the moon, and how it embodies an epic journey, as lead artist Alex Hartley said in Falmouth, or ‘how the colonialist gesture of claiming land might be re-imagined as a gesture of generosity, international exchange and a bid for freedom’.