Twenty percent of the earth is covered in tundra. These vast and treeless territories are the most remote regions on earth. In winter, the land hibernates beneath a layer of insulative snow. In summer, the snows become permafrost pools and the tundra unveils itself as a moss-laden horizon.
On the contested lands of Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve is a challenge of vision. For those who would embrace its quiet enormity, the land unfolds with tremendous hidden life. For the others, the tundra remains a vegetative mat covering the black riches of oil.
Photographer Kiliii Yuyan uncovers the hidden stories of polar regions, wilderness and Indigenous communities. Informed by ancestry that is both Nanai (Siberian Native) and Chinese-American, he explores the human relationship to the natural world from different cultural perspectives. Kiliii is an award-winning feature contributor to National Geographic Magazine and other publications.
© text and pictures by Kiliii Yuyan