.::..Nicholas Sagan..::. …:.::..artworks and experiments…::.:…nicholassagan@gmail.com


Here is the press release!  Some fellow artists and I have been invited to show some video work at Orange Skin here in Chicago during the upcoming Neocon Trade’s Fair.  Exciting!  To be honest, I had never heard of Neocon before a couple weeks ago but I’m never one to shy away from showing work!  Here is the press release(ish):

Orange Skin
223 West Erie Street
(Erie & Franklin) brown line to chicago & walk south 3 blocks
Chicago, IL 60654-4962
(312) 335-1033

I’ll be showing a video piece that is a small collection of fictional celestial objects.  I began to collect these observations just under 2 years ago and they have since evolved into a specific theme.  As soon as a more coherent context for these objects emerged I developed a system for gathering them.  There are certain criteria an object and it’s environment must meet in order to be collected and cataloged.  The first of which is that it should be circular or spherical, or emit an “aura” in such shape.  The second of which is that the object in question should have a large, mostly blank field present to contextualize it.  Some objects have qualities of motion that are self-generating, that is they are objects that move, whereas others are static, save for some tricky camera manipulations.  There are some objects where their raw form is static and then they become quite animated through the utilization of video filters.  So that’s the technical.

The ideas behind this line of inquiry really have to do with the blurring of science and art.  There are certain elements of the visual language used by scientists and astronomers that has a very strong aesthetic resonance.  If you look at some of the deep sky photographs you’ll find that most often they are very poor quality, and yet can tell us an amazing amount of information from a single frame when properly analyzed.  My argument with these is that they are interesting enough and yield aesthetic results a) on their own without scientific deconstruction/analysis and b) can be a combination of empirical and aesthetic.

Another force at work within is the question of the truth claims and empirical validity of astronomy.  Not in the same way as “the moon landing was a hoax” kind of way, but that we must have a certain level of trust and belief in the instruments we build to mediate these actual night sky objects.  We build and build and build and collect all this information…but then we process all of this information in certain ways that are meant to be empirically objective.

So how does that explain the astronomers who false color the images to appease a certain public?  I understand the necessity to color hydrogen red and helium blue to better understand nebulous structures and the like, but space is a big place and that means that right now, before we are at the stage where we are able to develop such high-resolution images of these objects that we can see individual, terrestrial-scale objects, our imaginations have a lot of room to play.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *