The moon as marble in the darkness of space
The Scratch and Scar of Marbled World
A luminous sphere of green-gold light shines in the darkness of space.
I am indebted to Steven Dutch, Professor (retired), College of Environmental Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, who kindly granted permission to use his superb geological maps of the moon as source material for this artwork.
There is an intimacy to this work when seen in its entirety: the scale of the object becomes ambiguous. Towards its base we see the thick circular blackened bruise of the South Pole Aitken basin of the moon, the largest impact crater known in our solar system, and yet this image is as easily viewed of as a marble that could be held in the hand of a young child.
As I gaze more closely I see the scratched surface of an ancient world, full with energetic geological markings that have formed over billions of years. I see the evidence of the crash of comets, the flow of highlands and valleys: the signs of an ancient, active past. This place is in stark contrast to the earth where the movement of its crust and the actions of its abundant life mask any signs of celestial catastrophe within a few hundred years - a blink of an eye on a cosmic timescale.
The Scratch and Scar of Marbled World presents the moon as a place we can almost touch. A place we might roll from side to side in the palm of our hand. The sphere's light and colour represents the moon's emotive force, its texture, felt from childhood to old age. The darkness, its mystery and our desire to explore the unknown.