New York City, NY
On July 20, 1969, half a billion viewers around the world watched as the first images of American astronauts on the moon were beamed back to Earth. The result of decades of technical innovation, this thrilling moment in the history of images radically expanded the limits of human vision.
Celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, Apollo's Muse: The Moon in the Age of Photography surveys visual representations of the moon from the dawn of photography through the present. In addition to photographs, the show features a selection of related drawings, prints, paintings, films, astronomical instruments, and space-flown cameras.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website
Whether or not you go, the exhibition catalog, Apollo’s Muse: The Moon in the Age of Photography, provides a fascinating view of lunar imagery. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission, the book honors the rich history of photographic representations of the moon, from rarely seen early daguerreotypes to contemporary video art. Engaging and accessible, the book explores how photographers captured this celestial body—and how the images have in turn inspired artists, writers, and scientists. The book includes extraordinary reproductions of the first successful series of lunar daguerreotypes by the American photographer John Adams Whipple, along with film stills from Voyage dans la Lune (1902) by Georges Méliès; American “paper moon” studio portraits; images from the Apollo mission; and works by contemporary artists, including Vija Celmins, Roy Lichtenstein, Aleksandra Mir, Vik Muniz, Nam June Paik, and Robert Rauschenberg. Related prints, drawings, paintings, and astronomical instruments explore artists’ fascination with the moon, as an object of both art and science. A foreword by actor Tom Hanks, star of the award-winning 1995 film Apollo 13, outlines the importance of lunar images to art and cinema, reinforcing the universal fascination with representations of the cosmos.
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