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Beauty! Passion! Pahoehoe! Volcanic excitement at Environmental Graffiti 27 April 2009

Posted by admin in Hawaii, volcano images, volcano tourism, volcanoes.
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That unusual and always interesting corner of the web Environmental Graffiti (‘an eclectic mix of the most bizarre, funny and interesting environmental news on the planet’) has a long-standing and thoroughly admirable interest in volcanoes.

Their latest article of volcanic interest, ‘Anything for the perfect volcano shot!’ by Karl Fabricius, talks to Dr Tom Pfeiffer of VolcanoDiscovery about the excitements and dangers of volcano-visiting, and includes some stunning photographs from the heart of the action in Hawaii.

Environmental Graffiti: Anything for the perfect volcano shot! (27 April 2009)

The Volcanism Blog

Zooming in on Redoubt 20 April 2009

Posted by admin in Alaska, eruptions, United States, volcano images.
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A beautiful clear day on Cook Inlet today, and some wonderful views on the various webcams that the Alaska Volcano Observatory has trained on Mount Redoubt. The zooming in of the Hut Webcam on the area of the extruding lava dome is particularly stunning. The dark mass in the upper middle of the image is the lava dome, looking sinister as lava domes always do:

Redoubt - AVO Hut Webcam, 20 April 2009, 07:53

The more conventional Hut Webcam view is also beautiful today:

Redoubt - AVO Hut Webcam, 20 April 2009, 06:50

The DFR Webcam is giving a lovely crystal-clear image:

Redoubt - AVO DFR Webcam, 20 April 2009, 08:19

And finally the Cook Inlet camera gives a nice wide vista of the erupting volcano:

Redoubt - AVO CI Webcam, 20 April 2009, 07:06

The news from Redoubt is not itself dramatic. The eruption is continuing, the lava dome is building, there is a thermal anomaly at the dome and a continuous, low but vigorous steam plume.

[Hat tip to commenter theroachman for drawing my attention to the Redoubt webcams.]

For all our Redoubt coverage: Redoubt « The Volcanism Blog.

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Redoubt – summary information for Redoubt (1103-03-)
Alaska Volcano Observatory – Redoubt – AVO information and updates for Redoubt
Alaska Volcano Observatory – main page for the AVO

The Volcanism Blog

Volcano images from NASA Earth Observatory 19 April 2009

Posted by admin in Alaska, Chile, Ecuador, Fernandina, Llaima, NASA Earth Observatory, Pacific, Papua New Guinea, Rabaul, Redoubt, Tonga, United States, volcano images.
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A lot has been going on around the world, volcanically speaking, over the past few weeks, and the NASA Earth Observatory has been featuring some wonderful satellite imagery of current volcanic events.

Submarine eruption in the Tonga Islands (NASA image, 26 March 2009)
Submarine eruption in the Tonga Islands (acquired 26 March 2009): an ASTER image from NASA’s Terra satellite showing new land created by the eruption at Hunga Ha’apai, sediment-laden water around the island, and evidence of the destruction of vegetation by the volcanic action.

Plume from Mount Redoubt (NASA image, 26 March 2009)
Plume from Mount Redoubt (acquired 26 March 2009): a series of images captured by the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) of the plume produced by Mount Redoubt between 09:00 and 11:30 local time on 26 March 2009.

Plume from Rabaul volcano (NASA image, 3 April 2009)
Plume from Rabaul Volcano (acquired 3 April 2009): a MODIS image from NASA’s Aqua satellite shows an off-white plume (suggesting mainly water vapour content) from Rabaul blowing away to the south-east.

Sulfur dioxide plume from Isla Fernandina (NASA image, 14 April 2009)
Sulfur dioxide plume from Isla Fernandina (aquired 14 April 2009): the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI) on NASA’s Aura satellite captured data on the SO2 plume emitted by the eruption of Fernandina in the Galapagos Islands.

Plume from Mount Pagan (NASA image, 15 April 2009)
Plume from Mount Pagan (acquired 15 April 2009): a MODIS image from NASA’s Terra satellite shows a gas-and-steam plume released by an eruption of Mount Pagan in the Mariana Islands.

Eruption from Llaima volcano, Chile (NASA image, 16 April 2009)
Eruption from Llaima volcano, Chile (acquired 16 April 2009): the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 satellite captured a stunning unobstructed view of Llaima’s barren, lava-layered summit area.

The NASA Earth Observatory is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary, and is inviting everyone to vote on their favourite Images of the Day from the last ten years of wonderful satellite imagery. Seven of the fifty finalists are volcano-related, and any one of them would be a worthy winner.

The Volcanism Blog

Chaitén dome and pinnacle from the north-west 8 April 2009

Posted by admin in Chaitén, Chile, volcano images.
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A little while ago we published some beautiful pictures of Chaitén’s lava dome and pinnacle, viewed from Chaitén town, taken by Nicolas La Penna of Chaitur.com on 17 March this year. Nicolas has very kindly sent in two more pictures which are of particular interest because they show the northern side of the volcano, which is an aspect we see far less often than the southern side that faces the town.

Chaiten Volcano 16 March 2009 (photo Nicolas La Penna Chaitur.com)

Chaiten Volcano 16 March 2009 (photo Nicolas La Penna Chaitur.com)

The pictures were taken on 16 March 2009 from a position north-west of the lava dome. The sheer wall of the pinnacle, wreathed in steam, is very evident in these pictures.

Thanks to Nicolas La Penna of Chaitur.com for these pictures.

For all our Chaitén coverage: Chaitén « The Volcanism Blog.

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Chaitén – summary information for Chaitén (1508-41)
SERNAGEOMIN – Servicio Nacional de Geología y Minería (Spanish)
Erupción del Volcán Chaitén – extensive coverage of the Chaitén eruption

The Volcanism Blog

The Big Picture: Redoubt 7 April 2009

Posted by admin in Alaska, eruptions, Redoubt, United States, volcano images.
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The Boston Globe has some stunning, and varied, images of Redoubt’s current eruptive activity in its ‘Big Picture’ feature. Lots of wonderful volcano pictures to feast your eyes upon: Alaska’s Mount Redoubt – The Big Picture.

Montage of Redoubt volcano 2009 eruption images (all courtesy AVO/USGS)

[Tip of the hat to Dr Erik Klemetti at Eruptions.]

For all our Redoubt coverage: Redoubt « The Volcanism Blog.

The Volcanism Blog

Time-lapse video of Llaima eruption, 4 April 2009 6 April 2009

Posted by admin in activity reports, Chile, eruptions, Llaima, volcano images.
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Llaima 4 April 2009, 18:31 (POVI)

The dedicated Llaima-watchers at POVI, Proyecto Observación Visual Volcán Llaima, have compiled a time-lapse video of the eruption of Llaima on 4 April 2009. The three-minute video compresses images from around 17:27 to 20:10 local time, captured by their webcam pointed at the volcano’s summit, and shows some spectacular fire-fountaining both in daylight and in the dark (see images above and below).

The POVI video can be viewed at YouTube.

Llaima 4 April 2009, 20:10 (POVI)

For all our Llaima coverage: Llaima « The Volcanism Blog.

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Llaima – summary information for Llaima (1507-11=)
Oficina Nacional de Emergencia – Chilean government emergencies office
SERNAGEOMIN – Servicio Nacional de Geología y Minería, Chile
Proyecto Observación Visual Volcán Llaima – Llaima Visual Observation Project

The Volcanism Blog

Saturday Volcano Art: Frederic Edwin Church, ‘Cotopaxi’ (1862) 4 April 2009

Posted by admin in Saturday volcano art, volcano art, volcano culture, volcano images, volcanoes.
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Frederic Edwin Church, 'Cotopaxi' (1862)

The Ecuadorean stratovolcano Cotopaxi has a violent history of frequent explosive eruptions generating pyroclastic flows and lahars. Between 1803 and 1895 there were over thirty such eruptions, with the largest, the VEI=4 event of 1877, producing lahars which swept through adjacent valleys, destroying much of the city of Latacunga with many fatalities, and ultimately reached as far as the Pacific coast, 270 kilometres to the west.

The painter Frederic Edwin Church (1826-1900), who had been a pupil of Hudson River School artist Thomas Cole and was by the late 1840s a noted painter of American landscapes, was drawn to South America by the geological and natural history writings of Alexander von Humboldt, who had travelled through the continent from 1799 to 1804. Church visited South America twice, in 1853 and 1857, and was inspired by the mountains and volcanoes of the northern Andes to paint some of his greatest landscapes. Cotopaxi, which Humboldt had discussed at some length and which was one of the most aesthetically striking volcanoes of the region, as well as being one of the most active and formidable, was a natural subject for his art. Church’s earlier paintings of Cotopaxi depicted the volcano’s snowy cone rising placidly above a lush tropical landscape, steam rising gently from its summit, a living but benign presence. The painting shown here, executed in 1861-2, has a very different atmosphere. In this other-wordly scene we are presented with a staggering display of nature’s power, as the volcano violently erupts against a blood-red sunset, exploding upwards and spreading its dark smoke like a banner across the sky.

Church takes the volcano as a display of nature’s power and intensifies every aspect of it to suggest a cataclysmic conflict between the forces of darkness and those of light. All around are evidences of vast, incomprehensible energies: the roaring volcano, the blazing sun, the huge waterfall plunging into a rocky canyon, whose steep sides represent vast stretches of geological time. Yet the green foliage of the trees, the sparkling waters, the light of the sun penetrating the ashy gloom of the volcano’s clouds, indicate that even these awe-inspiring forces are ultimately under the control of a beneficent providence. Cotopaxi embodies the great natural energies driving the forces not only of destruction but of creation and renewal.

Frederic Edwin Church’s ‘Cotopaxi’ (1862) can be found at the Detroit Institute of Arts.

For all ‘Saturday volcano art’ articles: Saturday volcano art « The Volcanism Blog.

References

Terrie Dopp Aamodt, Righteous Armies, Holy Cause: Apocalyptic Imagery and the Civil War (Macon, GA: Mercer University Press, 2002)

Frank Baron, ‘From Alexander von Humboldt to Frederic Edwin Church: Voyages of Scientific Exploration and Artistic Creativity’ (2005)

William Gerdts, ‘The worlds of Frederic Edwin Church’ (2008)

David Huntington, The Landscapes of Frederic Edwin Church (New York: George Braziller, 1966)

David Huntington, ‘Church and Luminism: light for America’s elect’, in John Wilmerding (ed.), American Light: The Luminists Movement 1850-1875 (Washington, DC: National Gallery of Art, 1980)

Katherine Manthorne, Creation and Renewal: Views of Cotopaxi by Frederic Edwin Church (Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1985)

Barbara Novak, Nature and Culture: American Landscape and Painting, 1825-1875 (1980; New York: Oxford University Press, 2007)

The Volcanism Blog

Saturday Volcano Art: Thórarinn B. Thorláksson, ‘Hekla from Laugurdalur’ (1922) 28 March 2009

Posted by admin in Hekla, Iceland, Saturday volcano art, volcano art, volcano culture, volcano images, volcanoes.
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Thorarinn B. Thorlaksson, 'Hekla from Laugurdalur' (1922)

Hekla, the most active volcano in Iceland, has a distinctive elongated humped shape built up by repeated fissure eruptions and is a prominent feature of the southern Icelandic landscape. Its frequent eruptions and forbidding aspect have given this famous volcano a grim reputation: in local folklore Hekla was long known as one of the mouths of hell.

In Thórarinn Thorláksson’s 1922 painting ‘Hekla from Laugurdalur’, however, the volcano is depicted in a more positive light. It rises over the landscape like a guardian spirit, the evening sunlight touching its snowy slopes with a rosy light – noble and remote, but benign.

Thórarinn B. Thorláksson (1867-1924) was one of the pioneers of modern Icelandic art, concerned with exploring and expressing a distinctive Icelandic identity, particularly through the depiction of the Icelandic landscape. Thorláksson studied in Denmark and assimilated the prevailing Danish academic approach to landscape painting, which was conservative and naturalistic, but also also sought to give his work a truly Icelandic character, giving expression to the unique qualities of his homeland. He exhibited his work in Reykjavik in 1900, the first such exhibition ever held by an Icelandic painter in Iceland.

Hekla and the landscapes around it were favourite subjects for Icelandic artists. Thorláksson painted Hekla many times, giving the volcano an almost iconic status as a symbol of Icelandic identity. His ‘Hekla from Laugurdalur’ is a view of the volcano from the north-west, and shows Hekla rising above a green-blue landscape in which stunted vegetation and bare soil convey the ever-present tension in Iceland between barrenness and fertility. There is a sense of intimacy in the enclosed valley in the foreground, contrasting with the indeterminate spaces of the wide valley that opens beyond. Distant dark blue uplands rise like ramparts, with the volcano looming above, its form picked out with lightness and clarity. Hekla, the agent of destruction and violence, here slumbers peacefully in the light of the long Northern evening.

For all ‘Saturday volcano art’ articles: Saturday volcano art « The Volcanism Blog.

References

Julian Freeman, Landscapes from a High Latitude: Icelandic Art 1909-1989 (London: Lund Humphries, 1989)

Neil Kent, The Soul of the North: A Social, Architectural and Cultural History of the Nordic Countries, 1700-1940 (London: Reaktion, 2000)

Ólafur Kvaran (ed.), Þórarinn B. Þorláksson: Pioneer at the Dawn of a Century (Reykjavik: Listasafn Íslands/National Gallery of Iceland, 2000)

The Volcanism Blog

Redoubt plume lightning 28 March 2009

Posted by admin in Alaska, Redoubt, United States, volcano images.
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Lightning in Redoubt's 27 March 2009, 23:20, eruption plume (photographer Bretwood Higman)
Lightning in Redoubt’s 27 March 2009, 23:20, eruption plume (photographer Bretwood Higman). [source]

The Alaska Volcano Observatory has published some dramatic photographs of lightning in Redoubt’s eruption plume during the overnight activity of 27/28 March. The images can be found on this page at the AVO website. Thanks to Boris Behncke for the tip.

For all our Redoubt coverage: Redoubt « The Volcanism Blog.

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Redoubt – summary information for Redoubt (1103-03-)
Alaska Volcano Observatory – Redoubt – AVO information and updates for Redoubt
Alaska Volcano Observatory – main page for the AVO

The Volcanism Blog

Redoubt – AVO aerial video from 23 March 2009 25 March 2009

Posted by admin in activity reports, Alaska, eruptions, Redoubt, United States, volcano images.
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The Alaska Volcano Observatory has released aerial video footage taken during helicopter-supported fieldwork at Redoubt on 23 March 2009. The footage clearly shows the huge mudflows that have choked the Drift Valley, ashfall on the surrounding landscape, steam rising from meltwater channels, and the thickness of some of the mud deposits. The video is available to download as a 14min 33 sec 210MB .wmv file – for details, follow this link to the AVO website. Below are some screen captures from the video (credit: Kristi Wallace – AVO/USGS).

Redoubt aerial video, 23 March 2009 (Kristi Wallace - AVO/USGS).

Redoubt aerial video, 23 March 2009 (Kristi Wallace - AVO/USGS).

Redoubt aerial video, 23 March 2009 (Kristi Wallace - AVO/USGS).

Redoubt aerial video, 23 March 2009 (Kristi Wallace - AVO/USGS).

Redoubt aerial video, 23 March 2009 (Kristi Wallace - AVO/USGS).

For all our Redoubt coverage: Redoubt « The Volcanism Blog.

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Redoubt – summary information for Redoubt (1103-03-)
Alaska Volcano Observatory – Redoubt – AVO information and updates for Redoubt
Alaska Volcano Observatory – main page for the AVO

The Volcanism Blog