Barrow Cabins is the name of a collection of photographs by the Seattle-based photographer and mixed-media artist Eirik Johnson. Presented as a series of diptychs, the images show summer and winter views of small hunting cabins built by the Iñupiat inhabitants of Barrow, Alaska. Located just 320 miles north of the Arctic Circle, Barrow is a mere 1300 miles south of the North Pole and is the largest city of the North Slope Borough.
Johnson’s photos highlight the extremes of the Arctic summer and winter and present an interesting portrait of an often unseen society. With high winds and heavy snows, the inhabitants must construct these buildings with nothing more then makeshift materials, often using weathered plywood or old shipping pallets collected from a nearby decommissioned Navy Base. These buildings are triumphs of survivalist architecture and a great look into man fighting the extremes of nature.
For Johnson the series is a meditation on the passage of time and seasonal shift along the extreme horizon of the Arctic. It’s a really fascinating series of images and one that is well worth checking out in full on his site.