DATES: 7&8th September 2019
VENUE: The Royal Photographic Society, RPS House, 337 Paintworks, Arnos Vale, Bristol, United Kingdom, BS4 3AR (Unless Otherwise Stated)
These talks will be facilitated by Lumen to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Moon Landing and support the RPS exhibition Space Steps the Moon and Beyond.
TALKS SATURDAY 7 SEPTEMBER - Book Talks for Day One
10.30 – Intro from LUMEN
10.45 - 11.45 Julie Hill
Julie’s talk gives an overview of her practice which questions scientific images and the technologies used to construct them. In particular she will discuss Elizabeth Kessler’s notion of the astronomical sublime, inspired by 18th Century Romantic landscape paintings, and how approximations to the earthly and geological are embedded within astronomical images, in an attempt to make them understandable.
11.45 – 12.45 Print Science Talk and Table Display
Print Science is a collaborative project by artists Louise Beer and John Hooper. The project was inspired by Cosmographia (Petrus Apianus, 1548) which was viewed by the artists at Monte Cassino, Italy, during a Lumen residency. The incredible ‘treasure’ within this book led the artists to start their own collection of historical astronomy books. From here they photograph the illustrations, and present them as framed objects, bags or cards. In order to preserve the connection the astronomers had with our mysterious cosmos, the emotive language used within the books to describe the wonders of space and the multitude of celestial bodies is included in the reproductions as short quotations. Print Science will share some of their favourite images from their collection.
(LUNCH 45 minutes)
1.30 – 2.30 Helen McGhie
Helen will discuss her research, in partnership with Kielder Observatory and the University of Sunderland. Helen’s research refers to “feminist science” theory and is critical of clichés in space imagery (such as vivid colours and mesmerising compositions). Helen’s talk will particularly focus on her recent series, a set of portraits of female astronomers and women in the space industry.
2.30 – 3.30 Hondartza Fraga
Hondartza’s talk will consider the relationship between astronomical images and artistic responses, with a particular focus on the remote objects of scientific observation. Hondartza’s recent interest has been the planet Saturn, and the recent NASA Cassini mission as her main focus.
15 minutes break
3.45 – 4.45 William Arnold
Will Arnold will talk about his series Tin-can Firmament, a series of months-long exposure pinhole photographs of the sky. The pieces, which function at both macro and micro level purport to have some grounding or basis in the scientific method that builds and organises knowledge in the form of testable explanations and predictions of forms in the universe, yet all have been produced of a largely emotionally driven catalyst. William Arnold will speak about this and other recent celestial diversions in a diverse photographic practice.
TALKS SUNDAY 8 SEPTEMBER Book Here
10.30 – Intro from LUMEN
10.45 - 11.45 Leanne Bell Gonzarow
Leanne will present a brief overview of her practice with a focus on how she investigates the digital image through an exploration of the various languages used to describe light: photographic, scientific, technical and poetic.
11.45 – 12.45 Luci Eldridge
Luci’s talk will consider how scientists and engineers are using immersive imaging technologies in their remote exploration of the planet Mars. Surveying the use of the panorama, the 3D image, the false colour image and ‘Mars Yards’, the relationship between constructed, reconstructed and imagined images will be explored.
(LUNCH 45 minutes)
1.30 – 2.30 Melanie King
Melanie King will give an overview of her own practice, with a particular focus on her series “Ancient Light”, a series of analogue astrophotographs. Melanie is interested in capturing light that has travelled for thousands, if not millions, of years throughout the void of space. Melanie has worked with Kielder Observatory and the UCLO Observatory to create these photos, and attended residencies in Iceland, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Cornwall and the Lake District to further develop this body of work.
2.30 – 3.30 Sam Cornwell
Sam will take you on a journey through the cosmos, showing you a carefully curated album of incredible imagery from outside of our atmosphere. Humans have been taking photographs from Space since the launch of the V2 rocket from American soil in 1946. Since then there have been many ground-breaking discoveries, cosmic coincidences and accidental masterpieces. Cornwell will punctuate this talk with his own astrophotographs, and his success with pioneering the Solarcan camera.
15 minutes break
3.45 – 4.45 Garry Fabian Miller Hon FRPS Talk & In Conversation with Melanie King
Garry Fabian Miller will present a selection of lunar images, reflecting on his relationship to the Moon, the Sun's reflected light and our relationship with the night sky. Garry will then be In Conversation with Melanie King, followed by a Q+A.
A drawing session in tune with Fraga’s recent works. She will discuss her approach to drawing and share some of the texts, tools and resources that have inspired her works.
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landings, Hondartza will assist participants in creating scale drawings of the Solar System using various stencils. This session is aimed at all levels of skill and basic materials will be provided, although participants can bring their own drawing materials.
Hondartza Fraga is a visual artist living in Leeds. She is currently studying a Practice-led PhD at the School of Design at the University of Leeds funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council through an award from the White Rose College of the Arts & Humanities (WRoCAH). Her research explores the relationship between art and astronomical places accessible via scientific visualisations. The catalyst for the project is the Cassini mission to Saturn, in particular, the relationship between the raw data/images and their processed versions.
Participants will be learning to use John Herschel's original cyanotype process to create unique photographic impressions on paper of plants and other objects, which they are then free to take home.
Please bring old clothes or an opron as some of the chemicals can stain. There will be things provided but feel free to bring along any large photographic negatives or translucent objects. No prior experince needed.
Invented by Sir John Herschel, a pioneer of modern astronomy, the cyanotype process harnesses the light radiated by our home star to render insoluble in water and in the deepest of celestial blues a photographic imprint of an object in a simple solution of iron salts. Famously used by botanist Anna Atkins to produce in the 1840s the first photographically illustrated books - beautiful folia of British plants and algae, we will be following in her footsteps to document the nearby flora and other terrestrial forms.
Living and working in West Cornwall, UK, William is interested in the layers of history, human and natural that comprise the making of the landscape and the role played by the photographic surface both literally and metaphorically in recording, interrogating and representing these histories.
His work explores themes of temporality and attributes of photography as both art and source of documentation. Interested in the politics of representation, the works draw from the subjectivity and objectivity involved in the act of photography and in how photographs are perceived.
Saturday 7 September 3.30pm – 5pm Julie Hill The Edible Universe Book Here
A gastronomic workshop/tasting experience exploring conceptions of deep space and its extreme environments. Imaginative culinary creations will be devised from scientific descriptions and information gathered by scientific instruments, such as the distant light from stellar objects and planetary surfaces. For instance, participants will be invited to taste edibles such as a creme brulée based on the surface of the Saturnian moon Titan and sip on Saggitarius B2, a giant molecular cloud at the centre of the Milky Way.
Julie F Hill is a British artist who employs an expanded approach to photography, creating sculptural installations that explore conceptions of deep-space and cosmological time. Hill studied at Central Saint Martins (BA), the Royal College of Art (MA) and is currently a Fellow in Digital Print at the Royal Academy Schools. She has exhibited nationally and internationally including the Capture Photography Festival, Vancouver, CA (2019); Grizedale Sculpture (2018); Glasgow International Festival, Glasgow, UK (2016); Single-Shot, Tate Britain, London, UK & Touring (2007). She is a current recipient of the Arts Council Developing Your Creative Practice Grant for her project Through Machine & Darkness that looks at the use of AI in examining astronomical datasets (2019). www.juliehill.co.uk
Sunday 8 10.30 am – 1.30pm Sam Cornwell Workshop - Book Here
Solarcan is an extreme time exposure camera capable of capturing the path of the Sun over days, weeks, months or years.
Using a technique known as Solargraphy that was invented in the latter years of last century attendees will get the chance to use Solarcan’s special equipment to build their very own, ready to use solargraphy camera. No special skills or knowledge necessary.
No prior skills or knowledge needed - just enthusiasm for image making!
Sam Cornwell is a photographic artist based in the Scottish Borders. A pioneer of the ‘second a day’ movement and vlogging, Cornwell is a recent Masters’ graduate of Edinburgh University in which he was awarded the ESALA student award for his studies in Material Practice. He won an Astrophotographer of the Year award and went on to found the Art in Space programme at one of the UK’s largest observatories before inventing the Solarcan, the world’s first commercial solargraphy camera.