Cheltenham Rocks

The Frozen Continent


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The Frozen Continent

“Edward Wilson was one of the most admirable of men. An expert naturalist, an intrepid explorer, modest and in the end, heroic. He was also an accomplished artist whose watercolours painted on expeditions with Captain Scott are not only scientifically accurate but uniquely evocative.”
Sir David Attenborough OM CH FRS

7 October 2023 –18 February 2024

The Wilson Art Gallery and Museum is named after Edward Adrian Wilson whose family archive it holds. It contains paintings, drawings, writings and possessions which tell the extraordinary story of Wilson – the man, the artist and the scientist.  The exhibition takes us on a journey through his early life in Cheltenham to his research of the Antarctic wilderness as a member of Captain Scott’s Antarctic team.
Wilson was the Chief of Scientific Staff on board the Terra Nova on its 1910 Antarctic voyage which set out in pursuit of a better understanding of the natural world.  The extreme conditions in Antarctica pushed the team to the limit of human endurance and the South Pole journey resulted in the loss of Robert Falcon Scott, Edgar Evans, Lawrence Oates, Henry Bowers and Edward Adrian Wilson to hypothermia.
An accomplished artist, Wilson created vivid depictions of the Antarctic landscape and its wildlife which provide important documentary evidence of its geology, biology and importantly, its meteorology.  His legacy is explored in an interactive exhibition which considers the impact of the changing climate on our lives today.
The Frozen Continent exhibition invites you explore first-hand the experience of the infamous journey to the Antarctic.  By providing insights into the men themselves we discover what they ate, how they passed the time, their relationships with each other, and what drove them in their ill-fated attempt to be the first to reach the South Pole.
Credit The British Library


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