Frances Stark, from the series ‘Ecce Homo’ (2000)
Tag Archives: history
Since 1963, more than eight hundred spacecraft have been launched into geosynchronous orbit, forming a man-made ring of satellites around the Earth. These satellites are destined to become the longest-lasting artifacts of human civilization, quietly floating through space long after every trace of humanity has disappeared from the planet.
Trevor Paglen’s The Last Pictures is a project that marks one of these spacecraft with a visual record of our contemporary historical moment. In 2012, the communications satellite EchoStar XVI was launched into geostationary orbit with the disc mounted to its anti-earth deck. While the satellite’s broadcast images are as fleeting as the light-speed radio waves they travel on, The Last Pictures will remain in outer space slowly circling the Earth until the Earth itself is no more.
The Last Pictures Artifact.
Some of the images on the disc.
EchoStar XVI launch in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, November 21st 2012.
Trevor Paglen, ‘The Last Pictures’ (2012)
‘The Shakers: Hands to Work, Hearts to God’, a film by Ken Burns and Amy Stechler Burns.
They called themselves the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing, but because of their ecstatic dancing, the world called them “Shakers.”
All works from ‘The Migration of the Negro’ series (1940-1945) by Jacob Lawrence.
Willem de Rooij, ‘Route langs 18 hoeken’ (Route Along 18 Corners) (1993)
A brochure setting out a route along 18 corners of galleries and exhibition spaces on the ground floor of the Stedelijk Museum building. The work was made before the building was renovated from 2004 – 2012 and depicts floors and walls that have since changed.
Simon Starling, ‘Inverted Retrograde Theme, USA (House for a Song bird)’ (2002)
This installation references a housing project in Puerto Rico which was designed by Austrian architect Simon Schmiderer (1911-2001) in the 1960s. Schmiderer developed a series of houses made of building blocks without doors or windows to further integrate the outside and inside spaces, but the rise of crime in the 1970s forced locals to add elaborate barriers onto Schmiderer’s designs. In Inverted Retrograde Theme, USA, Simon Starling recreates two of the existing homes on a smaller scale and inverts them like birdcages; these models sit atop tree trunks that extend from the gallery’s floor.
“My dad and I have had our rough patches. Growing up. I was popping pills and we had our share of scraps, but there are also nice memories — watching ‘Papillon’ on TV for the first time in our Ohio basement, and we caught a lot of catfish on the Little Kanawha River. My dad is also responsible for the most crucial turning point in my life. I was 10 years old, taking guitar lessons from a neighbor and it wasn’t going anywhere. My dad hunted down a real guitar teacher, a guy named Jim Smith, and the rest is history.”
‘Dad’s Stick’ (2012) by John Smith.
“Dad’s Stick features three well-used objects that my father showed me shortly before he died. Two of these were so steeped in history that their original forms and functions were almost completely obscured.” Watch extract on vimeo: