Prosperous Mountain



Short Documentary Film

15 min 45 sec





‘Prosperous Mountain’ was filmed at The Svalbard Global Seed Vault in the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard, Norway, February 2013.
Through an unfolding narrative, it explores the specific global landscape of the Arctic that plays part in a fragile ecological system.

As global plant diversity is rapidly declining and several plant species are facing extinction, numerous countries are collecting and storing seeds for securing the world’s future supply of food crop seeds. In addition to over 1400 seed banks located in countries that could experience nature disasters, wars and civil strife, The Svalbard Global Seed Vault has been constructed in order to store duplicates of food crop seeds samples.

Through the portrayal of the Arctic winter landscape that appears inhospitable, we are presented by human intervention through endeavours of mining, transport and global seed storage. As climate change and political conflicts are challenges that continually threaten the presence of international seed banks, The Svalbard Global Seed Vault may be a contemporary symbol of future existence. However, the remaining speculative question is who will open the door to the vault if needed in order for the stored seeds to be sown?

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault is a safety storage facility for seed samples from over 1400 international gene banks, as back-up material in case of local natural disasters, wars and civil strife.
The vault is located deep inside an Arctic mountain in the permafrost, 130 meters above sea level. The purpose of the vault is to secure global plant diversity and food security for the foreseeable future.
By February 2013, 774,604 food crop seed samples from 231 countries around the world were stored there. The full capacity of the vault is 3 million seed samples. It now stores one third of the worlds’ food crop seeds.


Screening History

‘Prosperous Mountain’ screens at COP27, November 2022. Part of University of Plymouth, UK delegation.

‘Prosperous Mountain’ screens at Cinemateket, Oslo, presented by the Norwegian Film Institute.

‘Prosperous Mountain’ screens at the international symposium ‘Environmental Photography and Humanities’, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

‘Prosperous Mountain’ exhibited at Bomuldsfabrikken Kunsthall, Norway.

‘Prosperous Mountain’ selected for official competition at the 37th Norwegian Short Film Festival, Grimstad, Norway.

‘Prosperous Mountain’ selected for Official Short Film Competition at Pelicam International Film Festival, Romania.

Selected for  official short documentary film competition at ‘Festival international du documentaire  Eau  et  Climat’, Belgium, March 2014.  Winner of 2nd Prize.

Exhibited in ‘Light Touch’ exhibition at Maryland Art Place: Baltimore / Washington International Airport, USA. February – June 2014.

Selected for the International Competition of the 20th International Short Film Week Regensburg, Germany.  March 2014.

Selected for Official Competition at the 31st International Environmental Film Festival, Paris. February 2014.

New Zealand Film Archive, Wellington, New Zealand.  2013.


Read essay from ‘Light Touch’ exhibition here: