Against the backdrop of a new Space Race and debates around the future use of inter-planetary energy resources, ‘They Used to Call it the Moon’ is a group exhibition at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art exploring the enduring iconography of the moon in the artistic imagination. With a focus on lunar mythology past and present, real, fictional, utopian and dystopian visions are presented, highlighting the continual politicisation and democratisation of space. The exhibition brings together artists from Pakistan, France, Germany, Croatia, the US and UK working in film, photography, drawing, sculpture and collage.
Part of the exhibition consists in a group of items loaned to Northern Film & Media and BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art by the Stanley Kubrick Archive. The exhibition includes material relating to the making of 2001: A Space Odyssey in the 1960s. The pieces reveal Kubrick’s visionary insights into his restaging of the lunar landscape for the cult film. These documents include sample scripts and early dialogue between Kubrick and legendary sci-fi author Arthur C. Clarke, whose short story The Sentinel was the inspiration for the film. Other works selected offer a tantalising glimpse into a pre-digital, pre-CGI world of filmmaking.
Developed and expanded from the popular research presentation at BALTIC 39, 'They Used to Call it the Moon' includes other work from the 1990s to the present, alongside a number of projects made especially for BALTIC’s Level 4 gallery. Original lunar maps, photographs from the 1969-72 NASA Apollo missions are also on show.
When: 31 October 2014 - 11 January 2015
Where: BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art (Level 4), Gateshead Quays, South Shore Road, Gateshead, NE8 3BA
We would very much like to thank the Stanley Kubrick Archive at University of the Arts, London, for their kind support of this activity.