Susan Gamble & Michael Wenyon: Great Halls of Science - Photographs and Holograms

March 22 - April 28, 2007


Magnan Projects is pleased to present the first viewing of works by Susan Gamble & Michael Wenyon in New York since their holograms were first shown at the Whitney Museum in 1991.  The exhibition will be on view from March 22nd - April 28th, 2007.

Wenyon & Gamble have worked together for 25 years exploring photo technologies such as holography and digital photography. In 1992 they were awarded a UNESCO prize for working in technology. Great Halls of Science explores objects and architecture from the mid-twentieth-century using twentieth-century media. Wenyon & Gamble have a history of working in astronomical observatories and other scientific institutions, reflected in the imagery in this show.

The holograms on display, Radio Waves from Space, depict magnetic discs of astronomical data. The images of discs from the 1960s and 70s have titles such as Venus or Mars; the original discs contain radio maps. Each hologram moves in color through the spectrum going into the infrared and ultra-violet, which appears soft to the eyes – a play on the fact that the holograms are pure light not pigment.

In their digital photographs the artists have documented ‘sites of science’, places of scientific production or cultural representation. The Great Hall: The New York Hall of Science, is a large panorama (92 inches long) that scans over this blue glass building that represented ‘space’ for the 1964 World’s Fair in Queens.  The Auditorium explores the aesthetic scale and form of the 1970s hall at the National Academies of Science, Washington, designed to house possibly the most important scientific meetings of the nation. In the Haystack Radome Mapped with its own Telescope, the dome of a radio telescope is digitally flattened like a medieval representation of the heavens. Buckminster Fuller designed this dome in the 1960s and the telescope mapped the moon for the first Apollo moon landing. In these images, Wenyon & Gamble reveal underlying aesthetic and abstract patterns of construction.

Susan Gamble was born in London, UK and Michael Wenyon in Dayton, Ohio. The artists bring together differing backgrounds: Gamble has a BA in Fine Art from Goldsmiths’ College, London and a PhD in the History of Science from Cambridge University, UK. Wenyon studied for a BSc in Physics at Bristol University, UK and an Msc in Optics. Their works are in prominent collections such as The Victoria & Albert Museum, London, the M.I.T. Collection, and the National Portrait Gallery, Washington. The artists live in New York City.