Alasdair is a Sydney-based painter, writer and historian, who has enjoyed a love of Antarctica and the Southern Ocean spanning more than 30 years.
Alasdair’s contact with the region began on the 1983 Heard Island Expedition – his first big adventure – in which he played a supporting role in the second only ascent of 3000-metre Big Ben, the active volcano that dominates the island. Two voyages with the Australian Antarctic Division’s Humanities Program followed in the next couple of years.
In the late 1990s, Alasdair was the artist and photographer for two Mawson’s Huts Foundation summer conservation expeditions to Cape Denison, then in 1999 Alasdair staged Mawson’s Antarctica: A view from the huts, a major exhibition of his Antarctic paintings and photographs. In 2000, Alasdair curated the Australian High Commission to Canada’s photographic exhibition, ‘… that sweep of savage splendour’: A Century of Australians in Antarctica.
Alasdair has published three books with Antarctic themes: Mawson’s Huts: An Antarctic Expedition Journal (1999); Antarctica: that sweep of savage splendour (collected writings – editor 2011); and a biography of the renowned polar photographer Frank Hurley: A photographer’s life (2004). His other books include Grand Obsessions: The life and work of Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony Griffin, winner of the 2011 National Biography Award.
Away from Antarctica, Alasdair writes regularly for Australian Geographic and his research and creative interests range over architecture and design, natural history, and the history of exploration.
Alasdair has worked as a lecturer on tourist voyages to Antarctica since 2005, and has been a keen member of Aurora Expeditions’ Antarctic expedition team since 2012.