24 NOVEMBER 2021 — An out of this world exhibition, complete with a digital space launch, is due to take place at the National Space Centre (NSC) from 3 through 5 December. The secure facility outside Midleton is normally closed to be public, but will be hosting the launch as part of an art exhibit addressing the challenging issue of space waste. A limited number of tours of the NSC will also be available to visitors.
The exhibition is the culmination of Ireland’s first Space Waste Residency, hosted by NSC neighbour Greywood Arts and funded by Cork County Council. The selected Artist in Residence, Nicklas Lundberg, was chosen from almost 100 international applicants. The Swedish sculptor has worked in Greywood Arts’ studios through the month of November, utilising space junk found at the NSC together with sounds captured inside the site’s iconic 32-meter dish. The result is an interactive installation that responds sonically to the proximity of the viewer, which visitors will be able to interact with.
The exhibition will also feature work from 110 local students. As part of the project, sculptor Scott Gorham, Education Coordinator at Greywood Arts, has led young people through a series of world building and sculpture workshops that explore language creation, geography, and ecological concepts like symbiosis. Participants used materials including waste circuit boards from the NSC, clay, and fabric to create topographies and symbiotic creatures.
“At the heart of this project is encouraging young people to use their imaginations to envision new worlds, in hope they will apply their creativity to our own world and it’s future,” explained Gorham.
A sculptural installation will showcase the collective language of symbols designed by students and then fabricated in neon in San Jose by California artist Kevin Chong before being shipped back for exhibition at the National Space Centre. A digital media exhibition will display more of the project executed by the student participants.
A special reception for the students will include a talk from the National Space Centre’s Chief Technical Officer, Bruce Hannah. The NSC’s resident space engineer will teach guests about satellite technology, and demonstrate by using a satellite to send digital copies of the young artists’ projects into space.
Tickets for the exhibit and tours of the NSC are free but booking is essential: https://nationalspacecentre.eu/space-waste-tickets/
IMAGE 1: A neon letter, invented as part of a language by 6th class students from Gaelscoil Mhainistir na Corann and fabricated in neon in San Jose by California artist Kevin Chong before being shipped back for exhibition at the National Space Centre December 03 – 05. Image: Kevin Chong.
IMAGE 2: A piece of overgrown debris from a satellite groundstation in the foreground, Nicklas Lundberg, artist in residence at Greywood Arts, prepares sounds for a space waste exhibition at the National Space Centre December 03 – 05. Image: Frieda Ford.
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ABOUT THE NATIONAL SPACE CENTRE
The National Space Centre (NSC) is Europe’s most westerly teleport and Ireland’s only commercial ground station. Opened as Elfordstown Earthstation in 1984 at a cost of IR£8M (€25M today), the facility celebrated ten years of operation as the NSC in 2020. The company provides commercial broadcast services, ground control support for satellites and space craft, academic research partnerships and space industry consulting. The NSC’s co-located Space Campus is home to more than a dozen Irish space startups and EU-headquartered space enterprises.
ABOUT GREYWOOD ARTS
Set in an historic Georgian house in the centre of Killeagh Village, Greywood Arts fosters creativity from the heart of East Cork. Since it’s 2017 founding, Greywood has hosted over 100 artists-in-residence from all over the world. Greywood also organises community art projects, programs cultural events and offers educational workshops.