Wave Signs

A collaborative installation with artist Carrie Bodle

Jurors’ Prize, Giant Steps: Artist Residency on the Moon

Project website: wave-signs.com

 

 

In 1946, before satellites existed, The US. Army Signal Corps began exploring the projective possibilities of the moon’s mute surface. Project Diana hailed the moon by the name of its Roman goddess, using it as a passive reflector of radio waves to bridge long communication distances on earth by sending a signal 768,000 Kilometers through space and time to return just 2.5 seconds later.

Poets, too, have used the Moon as a cypher for centuries. With its waxing and waning, its synchronous rotation, it appears in poem after poem as a lover and muse exerting a distant but powerful force.

Wave Signs meditates on this historic relationship, creating a conversation between these two orbs that exert such force over one another. Imagining the ability to repurpose antennas left behind by the Apollo 14 mission, the project envisions sending a compact payload of solar-powered digital converters to the landing site, creating remotely-controlled listening posts for artistic projects attuned to celestial movements.

In the gallery, two industrial megaphone-style speakers suspended from the ceiling represent relay stations on the Earth and moon. They communicate via a call and response text — a gradually mutating poem that builds a doublet, or word ladder, connecting them. Visitors passing between hear voices echoing from one to the other, creating intersections and changes of phase in which Earth and Moon take turns leading the conversation.

Press:

Seattle Times, March 8, 2016

Seattle Weekly, March 15, 2016

Seattle City Arts, March 29, 2016

UW Bothell IAS Newsletter: March 4, 2016; March 9, 2016

 

 

We conceived Wave Signs in response to Vital5Productions’ query asking what artists would make given 12 hours on the moon’s surface with the assistance of a single astronaut.

Proposals had to adhere to the following rules:

1 – Your work on the Moon must be achievable by you and one assisting astronaut. Subcontractors and other third parties may assist in your preparations, operations and execution from Earth, but only the artist and assisting astronaut will be present on the Moon.

2 – The full payload of your supplies and materials to the moon cannot exceed 6 cubic feet and weigh no more than 60KG. Your return payload cannot exceed 5KG.

3 – No explosives, toxic substances, or hazardous materials may be included in said payload. Batteries and/or solar powered equipment are permissible.

4 – Artist, or artist groups may include installation, sculpture, performance, dance, film, moon works or mixed media.

5 – The resident artist and assisting astronaut will have a total of twelve hours outside the craft, on the surface of the moon. This time will be divided into three

4 hour intervals maximum. Total duration of Moon residency will be 48 hours.

6 – Artists may use existing material on the moon (such as rocks and dust) and are expected to leave their supplies and/or artwork on the moon.

7 – The budget for supplies and materials for your proposed project cannot exceed $500,000.00 US dollars.

8 – Artist and artist groups must take into consideration the temperature, gravitational force and other atmospheric conditions of the Moon. We recommend using Wikipedia for general information and consulting with scientists, engineers and physicists to verify the plausibility of your proposal. Proposals that do not consider the scientific and atmospheric conditions on the moon will not be included in the exhibition.

9 – The landing site of the craft will be in the lunar equatorial regions, near side of the Moon, during the lunar mid-morning.

10 – The winning proposal will be based upon originality, conceptual strength, and technical feasibility. Please view these parameters as though the winning proposal were indeed going to be executed.

Vital5 Productions’s Greg Lundgren selected 50+ works for exhibition on the 3rd floor of Seattle’s King Street Station during March, 2016.

A jury of ten aerospace and arts professionals selected Wave Signs for the jury prize.