Press release

Opening of Exhibition on 26 June: Oceans - Expedition to Uncharted Depths

[23. June 2014] 

Joint Press Release: Alfred Wegener Institute and German Maritime Museum

German Maritime Museum and Alfred Wegener Institute present bizarre marine dwellers, photographed by Solvin Zankl


Bremerhaven, 23 June 2014. Gentoo penguins glide over the water almost like dancers. Just beneath them filigree jellyfish float through rays of light and manta rays glide past majestically. The viperfish appears eerily and with enormous fangs in the depths. Nature photographer Solvin Zankl from Kiel (Germany) has photographed them all. For years he has been travelling around the world, taking a closer look at islands, coasts and the open sea to document the dwellers of the oceans in all their splendour. This undertaking, together with GEO editor Lars Abromeit, resulted in the photographically illustrated book “Oceans – expedition to uncharted depths” in 2013. In addition, the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) and Deutsches Schiffahrtsmuseum (DSM - German Maritime Museum) are now displaying 35 impressive pictures of very different ocean dwellers from this book in Bremerhaven. The exhibition will officially open at the DSM at 7:30 pm on Thursday, 26 June 2014.

The exhibition of photographs takes visitors to tropical, subtropical, cool as well as polar seas and gives them an insight into the biggest and most mysterious habitat – the deep sea. Many of Solvin Zankl’s photographs are the result of scientific expeditions that he accompanied as a photographer. Some of his previous photographs of deep-sea organisms were taken during a research expedition carried out by AWI with the icebreaker “Polarstern” in the South Atlantic. On an expedition with the research vessel “Poseidon” and submersible “Jago” operated by the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel Zankl also captured on film cold-water coral reefs off the Norwegian coast that are inaccessible to divers with normal diving equipment. “I feel at home in the balancing act between science and photography,” says Zankl, who first studied Biological Oceanography in Kiel before making his hobby, photography, his profession in 1998. Solvin Zankl has been a freelance nature photographer for 15 years. His photo stories are published by leading magazines worldwide, first and foremost by GEO.


The photo show “Oceans – expedition to uncharted depths” by Solvin Zankl is designed as a touring exhibition and came into being with the financial support of AWI and GEOMAR. The presentation of his photographs at the DSM is the second stop and can be viewed until Sunday, 16 November 2014.


“Oceans – expedition to uncharted depths”. Photographs by Solvin Zankl.

Opening of the exhibition, public and free of charge: Thursday, 26 June 2014, at 7:30 pm

Venue: Deutsches Schiffahrtsmuseum, Hans-Scharoun-Platz 1, 27568 Bremerhaven, Germany

Welcoming address: Konrad Otten, Commercial Managing Director of the DSM, and Ralf Röchert, Head of Communications and Media Relations, AWI

Introduction to the exhibition: Solvin Zankl (photographer)

Musical accompaniment: Armando Balke (piano), Daniel Jeremy Maatz (guitar), Maurice Maatz (contrabass)


The book on the exhibition “Oceans – expedition to uncharted depths” by Solvin Zankl and Lars Abromeit, 264 pages, approx. 220 pictures, format 26.8 x 28.9 cm, hardcover with dust jacket, was published by Federking & Thaler Verlag (ISBN-13: 978-3-89405-977-4).


Media representatives are cordially invited to the exhibition opening.



Imke Engelbrecht, Science Communications, Deutsches Schiffahrtsmuseum, Hans-Scharoun-Platz 1, 27568 Bremerhaven, tel. +49 471 482 07 24, e-mail:,

Kinga Jarzynka, Event Management, Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Helmholtz-Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung, tel. +49 471 4831-1377, e-mail: 


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The Alfred Wegener Institute conducts research in the Arctic, Antarctic and oceans of the high and mid-latitudes. It coordinates polar research in Germany and provides major infrastructure to the international scientific community, such as the research icebreaker Polarstern and stations in the Arctic and Antarctica. The Alfred Wegener Institute is one of the 18 research centres of the Helmholtz Association, the largest scientific organisation in Germany.


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Das Institut

Das Alfred-Wegener-Institut forscht in den Polarregionen und Ozeanen der mittleren und hohen Breiten. Als eines von 19 Forschungszentren der Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft koordiniert es Deutschlands Polarforschung und stellt Schiffe wie den Forschungseisbrecher Polarstern und Stationen für die internationale Wissenschaft zur Verfügung.