These fifteen photographs are mostly ground-level panoramas of the site of the former Honeysuckle Creek Tracking Station in Namadgi National Park. The works reference NASA’s use of panoramic photography to document the features of other worlds, suggesting our local landscapes deserve the same close attention as astronauts once lavished on the moon. At the same time, their focus on the ground highlights the decline of outward-looking projects exemplified by Apollo.
Apollo 8’s crew were the first humans to leave earth orbit and look down on the moon. Their leap into the void was arguably more significant than the more famous first moon landing that followed several months later. Of its many profound aspects, this exhibition focuses on the crew’s decision to read from the book of Genesis during a television broadcast from lunar orbit on Christmas eve 1968. This gesture instinctively articulated the limits of human creative powers, even as these powers were manifesting in seemingly limitless ways. It has been criticized as anti-secular, anti-science, and for diminishing the glory of ‘man’. However, it is viewed here as a triumph of humility over hubris which may prove instructive as we navigate new technological and metaphysical unknowns.
This piece is from a series that uses NASA and National Geographic images to document the life of Neil Armstrong. It shows the launch of Gemini VIII which preceded Armstrong’s moon-landing mission.
Solo show at Brunswick Street Gallery, Fitzroy, Melbourne, 14 - 27 October 2016.
This show considers whether early US space programmes can be commemorated without boosterism or sentimentality. The pieces are hand-made collages made from found images. Most are made entirely from NASA images and National Geographics. They include portrayals of Apollo astronauts as winged and chiselled father-figures, bringing order and security to the young worlds that surround them; female and minority astronauts who flew only in subsequent eras; astronauts gazing out from the rotting cities that once built their moon ships; and disintegrating astronauts completing their journey home to the stars. A Chinese astronaut is also featured signalling the rise of new empires.
Fact-finding mission :)