A STARRY MESSENGER

2019
Hand-carved white alabaster, glass lenses, transparency film, plexiglass, steel
8x2x 4.5 feet

A new work by MDR explores time and space through combining anachronistic and contemporary aerial telescopic technologies. Modeled after Galileo Galilei’s telescope, this alabaster-carved sculpture presents a compound image stitching together various views captured by satellite surveillance systems. The image visible inside the telescope,  reveals a combination of satellite surveillance images randomly searched on the web by the artist.. 12 different images will be changed according to the moon cycle every time there is a new moon. 

The translucent stone, familiar to Tuscany where Galileo was born, suggests the clarity of his observational vision. The piece’s title is a translation of his 1610 pamphlet Sidereus Nuncius in which he first published his astronomical investigations, including the discovery of Jupiter’s moons, that provoked the ire of the Roman Catholic Church. A Starry Messenger allows the sky to look back at the Earth and humans to consider our relative position in space and time — historically and politically.

A Starry Messenger is part of the show Chronos Cosmos: Deep Time, Open Space a group show curated by Jessica Wilcox, on view at Socrates Sculpture Park in Queens, NYC

photo by MDR

photo by MDR

photo by MDR

photo by MDR

photo by Scott Lynch

photo by Scott Lynch

Detail of image #1 of a series of 12 images - photo by MDR

Detail of image #1 of a series of 12 images - photo by MDR

Photo by Scott Lynch

Photo by Scott Lynch

Detail of image #2 of a series of 12 images - photo by MDR