[New] Tara, the dawn of modern exploration

© Tara Expeditions Foundation

Published in February 2017, this book recounts Tara’s major expeditions from the beginning, in the words of its founders, captains, sailors, scientists and longtime friends.

From the polar ice caps to the high seas, the schooner Tara traverses the oceans, combining cutting-edge scientific research with the exciting world of exploration. Driven by a deep concern about current environmental upheavals, Tara’s sailors and scientists are perpetuating the tradition of the famous 19th century expeditions.

The history of modern-day exploration continues today with analysis of the ocean’s DNA. Taranauts describe their challenges, uncertainties and taste for sharing and adventure. Their narratives take us to the heart of a modern odyssey pushing back the frontiers of knowledge.

«I went to the North Pole in 1996 and discovered nature in its raw state. I wanted this boat to inspire us, to make us talk about the ocean and the planet.» Ever since Etienne Bourgois and agnès b. met Tara (Peter Blake’s former boat, built by Jean-Louis Etienne), fortuitous encounters and strong commitments have marked the history of the schooner. Tara’s beginnings? «Above all it’s a story of friends» but also «committed people», says Etienne Bourgois.

«Telling Tara’s story from the beginning is a narrative with many voices. We wanted those who had key roles, who sometimes remained in the background, to talk about how Tara gradually became a unique oceanographic ship,” explains Romain Troublé, executive director of the Tara Expeditions Foundation.



From the first explorations in 2004 to the Tara Pacific expedition which began in 2016, the schooner has become an ambassador of the ocean, a new Calypso for younger generations. Tara has gradually become a symbol inspiring many of us — artists, policymakers, philanthropists, and students.

The book is illustrated with photographs and maps showing the schooner’s route. A chapter is dedicated to the works of artists-in-residence aboard Tara. They are witnesses of the Arctic immensity, the microscopic treasures of plankton and the fragility of the ocean in the face of pollution — Sebastião Salgado, Francis Latreille, Ellie Ga, Pierre Huyghe, Benjamin Flao, Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques, Mara G. Hasseltine, Elsa Guillaume and others.


176 pages
Journalistic and editorial collaboration: Dino Di Meo
Edited by the Tara Expeditions Foundation
Limited Edition – 29,00 €


Available in French, English and Japanese
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