What Goes Around Comes Around

What Goes Around Comes Around

Help enable me attend The Arctic Circle artist residency in Svalbard and explore the impact of plastic on the environment

We did it!

On 4th Sep 2017 we successfully raised £1,295 with 35 supporters in 35 days


I have been selected to join an expedition in October to the Arctic to further develop my on-going project What Goes Around Comes Around, which explores ways of visualising and communicating climate change. 

Artist and scientist led, the expedition is an annual residency program called The Arctic Circle that brings together international artists, scientists, architects, and educators, enabling a unique interdisciplinary collaboration and exploration of the region, and to engage in central environmental issues of our time. 

I will be on board a traditionally rigged tall ship for 18 days, exploring the coast of Svalbard. During the expedition I will be documenting the environment, making art, and collecting land and air samples on behalf of Dr Stephanie Wright and her team at Kings College London, who are leading research into the impact of microplastics on the environment and on human health. 


What Goes Around Comes Around explores the relationship between consumer lifestyle in Britain and the Arctic environment, with particular focus on the impact of plastic waste. It aims to challenge audiences to question the impact of their own lifestyle choices; central to this is an exploration of how art can effectively communicate scientific issues without being overly moralistic.

My awareness of and interest in climate change began two years ago when questions were raised about the environmental impact of my lifestyle that I had not previously considered. What I have learned has been quite overwhelming.

For me, coming to terms with the implications, coupled with the recent loss of both my parents, has made my journey very much a search to reconcile my simultaneous bereavement of reality and Self. In this way, my practice is partly auto ethnographic, centring myself within my exploration as an observer and as one of the observed, recognising and challenging my own identity as a British consumer and contributor to global climate change.

My work closely references current scientific research on climate change and plastic pollution and addresses ideas relating to the Anthropocene, identity, legacy and loss.


The total cost of the project is just over £10,000, which I am mostly paying for myself. I am hoping to raise half of that through this campaign. Funds raised will go towards the cost of the residency fee, travel, equipment and materials required, as well as the subsequent project development costs including an exhibition of new work:

  • Residency fee: £4833
  • Return travel from the UK to Svalbard (trains, flights, insurance, accomodation): £1000
  • Expedition equipment (specialist clothing, artist materials & equipment): £1000
  • Project development (materials,  tools, software licensing, events, books & resources, software licensing, studio rent): £2000
  • Exhibition (materials, venue hire, PR, transport): £1000

I am also supporting two charities in Dorset, Weldmar Hospice, and the Cedars Castle Hill, who provided paliative care for my parents. 25% of the total amount raised throught this campaign will be donated to them, helping to continue the excellent cancer and dementia care and support they provide. 


I was born in Salisbury, UK in 1976 and grew up in the southwest of England. Now based in London, I am an artist with an interest in the creative relationships between art and science. My practice spans installation, film, photography and painting. 

I began this project in 2016 whilst studying on the MA Art and Science degree programme at Central Saint Martins when I collaborated with the Government Office for Science in response to their forthcoming report From Waste To Resource Productivity. I was awarded a MullenLowe NOVA award in July 2017 for work already completed and exhibited as part of this project.

To find out more about my work please visit: www.hannahscott.com


I am thrilled to have already had some great articles written about this project by:


Synthetic and non-synthetic plastics are ubiquitous in modern life. It is one of the most versatile materials, which has allowed the development of infinite technological, medical, and manufacturing advances. However, it comes at a high price through the continued extraction and burning of fossil fuels, growing consumerism, and trends in convenience and single use items, which all contribute to the pollution of the land, air, and water, harming marine life, birds, humans and other animals. 

Almost all plastic packaging is designed and manufactured for single-use application. 8 million tonnes of plastic packaging enters our oceans every year and most of the marine plastic litter from Britain ends up in the Arctic, taking less than two years to get there. The Arctic is warming more than twice as fast as the global average and it is predicted that the Arctic Ocean could become ice-free during the summer months this century due to global warming. As the polar region warms and annual sea ice declines, large quantities of microplastics will be released back into the ocean.

Plastics in the ocean can persist for decades at the very least, if not hundreds of years. Ingested by marine organisms, they are passed to larger predators up the food chain as they in turn consume their prey. Laboratory studies show that due to the effect of microplastics, oysters produce fewer eggs and marine worms’ energy reserves are reduced by up to 50%. Plastics are now present in the food we consume and in the air we breath. The effect of plastic on human health is not yet fully understood but we do know that plastics and thier toxins can bioaccumulate over time and that nanoparticles are able to cross cell membranes.

Your support will help me to continue working as an artist raising awareness and contributing directly to scientific research about this incredibly important issue that affects us all. 

THANK YOU so much for taking the time to read this - your interest and help is hugely appreciated.

Here's a short interview I gave about my work recently for the 2017 MullenLowe NOVA awards:

This is a timelapse video of my ice installation 270 Single Uses, at Kings Cross, London, 23 May 2017:

This is the boat I will be on board for 18 days:


Signed, limited edition photographs from the expedition and original artwork from the Slice series. You can select from these options when you make a donation.

Slice I was sold at auction last year by Alex Branczik, Sotheby’s Senior Director and Head of Contemporary Art, Europe. Slice II-V are available to buy - images of the series are shown below. Please contact me if you have any queries.

Slice II - Sliced high-density polyethylene and low-density polyethylene cube cast, 70 x 20cm

Slice III Sliced high-density polyethylene and low-density polyethylene cube cast, 70 x 20cm

Slice IVSliced high-density polyethylene and low-density polyethylene cube cast, 70 x 20cm

Slice V Sliced high-density polyethylene and low-density polyethylene cube cast, 70 x 20cm

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