Whitewashing the Moon / The Forgotten Works

Whitewashing the Moon / The Forgotten Works

Project Arts Centre

Jorge De la Garza, Untitled No.1 (Book 5), Collage IV series, 2008.

August 13, 2012

Whitewashing the Moon and The Forgotten Works
24 August–27 October 2012
Opening: Thursday 23 August at 6pm

Project Arts Centre
39 East Essex Street
Temple Bar
Dublin 2, Ireland

gallery [​at​] projectartscentre.ie


Whitewashing the Moon
Caroline Achaintre (FR), Jorge De la Garza (MX), Eleanor Duffin (IE), Barbara Knezevic (AU/IE), Raphaël Zarka (FR), and Edward Everett Hale (US)

“They have gone up!” said Haliburton; “She has gone up!” said I; – both in one breath. And with a common instinct, we looked up into the blue. But of course she was not there.

Written in 1869, Edward Everett Hale‘s short story The Brick Moon, tells the tale of the men and women who conceived of the first recorded imagining of a satellite in orbit, and the events that unfolded as they went about creating their ‘Brick Moon.’ An ultramodern concept for its time, the science-fiction fantasy creates an extraordinary transformative effect; they first conceive, then fund-raise for, then engineer, then build the hollow brick sphere, constructed like ‘conglobated bubbles undissolved,’ then accidentally propel it into space full of people, where eventually it is located in the night sky orbiting the earth as planned. Beyond the hopes of those left in its wake, it is populated with people, growing their own food sources and functioning as an inhabitable space station.

The Brick Moon in orbit can be seen from earth, but it never took on the sculptural illusion of the white moon the builders envisioned. Before they could amass the finances for the ‘sort of paste, which in its hot flight through the air might fuse into a white enamel,’ the satellite, through a freak storm, is launched prematurely.

The exhibition at Project Arts Centre Whitewashing the Moon, remembers this little aside in the story—the irrelevant yet striven-for aesthetic transformation from an artificial satellite to the more dramatic illusion of a fake moon. This transformative concept is at the centre of artistic thinking in Whitewashing the Moon, in which a twilit garden of sculptures, images, and installations communicate a similar potential for objects. The works of Caroline Achaintre, Jorge De la Garza, Eleanor Duffin, Barbara Knezevic, and Raphaël Zarka all explore in different ways an envisioning of new worlds through objects and ideas.

The imaginative work of the story allows for the possibility that an object once placed in an exhibition, has the potential to alter its own meaning. Some call these things ‘magical objects’—things that we allow and expect to do things back to us, and Alexandra Lembert offers us this: ‘A magical object is perhaps best characterised as a medium in which opposites such as visible and invisible, material and immaterial, or past, present and future meet and transform.’[1] Transformation by appropriation, and transformation by creation are the stimuli for the exhibition Whitewashing the Moon.

Whitewashing the Moon is curated by Tessa Giblin and Kate Strain.
Kindly supported by the Embassy of Mexico in Ireland and the French Embassy in Ireland.

Coinciding with Whitewashing the Moon, Project Arts Centre continues its new experimental Grotto series with Here’s To You, a site-specific installation by Kevin Kirwan (IE). Engaging with ideas of museological space, Kirwan subverts conventional display mechanisms, activating an  ambiguous narrative through the presentation of a single photograph.

Ruth E. Lyons (IE)
The Forgotten Works
Launching: Thursday 23 August at 6pm

Black, bright, amorphous, Ruth E. Lyons‘ major new commission, The Forgotten Works, appears to pull and push the facade of Project Arts Centre. A shape-shifter by day, an imploding mass by night, the large-scale construction creeps across the building, moving in a disarray of bitumen-coated struts from the balcony towards the pedestrian street below. This public installation is part-sculpture, part-performance, harnessing an incidental audience. In constant flux, The Forgotten Works shifts as darkness falls, its density both encasing and emitting light from within its depths.

Ruth E. Lyons’ new installation is curated by Tessa Giblin, commissioned and produced by Project Arts Centre, and generously supported by a Project Award from the Arts Council of Ireland.

Project Arts Centre
is a multidisciplinary arts centre in the heart of Dublin, Ireland. The visual arts programme commissions new exhibitions, both on and off-site, with leading artists from around the world. Touring exhibitions include Sarah Browne (IE) How to Use Fool’s Gold, currently at Contemporary Art Gallery (CAG), Vancouver, Canada, and Mikala Dwyer (AUS) Panto Collapsar forthcoming at venues across Ireland. Upcoming onsite gallery projects include guest-curated exhibitions by Krist Gruijthuijsen and Anthony Huberman.

Gallery exhibition hours: Mon–Sat, 11–8pm
Admission to the visual arts at Project Arts Centre is always free.

Project Arts Centre is supported by the Arts Council and Dublin City Council.

1. Lembert, Alexandra, “Thoughts are Things”: Magical Objects, Objective Magic and Sax Rohmer’s The Dream-Detective (1920), from Leipzig Explorations in Literature and Culture, vol 12: Magical Objects: Things and Beyond, ed Schenkel, Elmar and Welz, Stefan (Galda and Wilch Verlag, Berlin, 2007)

Whitewashing the Moon / The Forgotten Works at Project Arts Centre, Dublin
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August 13, 2012

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