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The Clarity of HindSight


1973-2002 - mixed technique 60x60x60 cm (LED internally lit) - Dedicated to Galileo Galilei

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The eye turns towards the sky and looks through a telescope into ‘timeless’ (?) space.

The artist made the target colour turquoise green following the 2001 discovery by Karl Glazebrook and Ivan Baldry, at John Hopkins University, that this was the colour of the universe. They obtained this ethereal green by breaking down all the wavelengths of visible colours, and converting their components into a single colour perceptible to the human eye. A year later, however, Glazebrook and Baldry corrected their analysis – there had been an error in the software used in their calculations. The true colour of the universe, it turns out, is a rather uninspiring beige (!) known as ‘Cosmic Latte’.

Luckily, art can make up for the sometime dullness of reality, and so the green here has not been replaced by a very unromantic, cappuccino off-white – even if it is no longer particularly ‘truthful’.

The location of the eye on this sculpture seems strange (though Max Ernst has gone one ‘better’ (?) by drawing an eye in a vagina!).

Here we have an implicit reference to the overthrow of geocentric theory into heliocentric theory.

The work is dedicated to Galileo, who observed through his telescope the phases of Venus, discovered the four largest satellites of Jupiter, and watched and analysed sunspots. Galileo supported heliocentrism, writing the ‘Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems’. He was subsequently tried by the Roman Inquisition in 1615 on charges of heresy.

Might we have the courage to think in a revolutionary way, to reason by contradiction, remove the axioms, and generate infinite equations by definition?

It is said that when we look into the night sky, we are really looking at past events, as the stars and planets are so far away from us that it takes a good deal of time for their light to travel to us.

However, some scientists (Roger Penrose in primis) postulate that while matter cannot travel faster than light, information can.
Experiments have measured the speed of this ‘quanglement’ to be at least 10,000 times faster than the speed of light !?! What implications does this have? Perhaps while we may not be able to ‘see’ the events in the lives of stars and planets ‘now’, we can experience the reality of those events via the ‘wavefunction’ which takes place when they happen, and which is inextricably tied to us and all of the cosmos.