Clayton Morgan - 'Habetebel' - 16 September to 7 October 2023 at Photospace Gallery, Wellington Aotearoa NZ
Habetebel is a photographic project that explores the relationship between the historic Apollo 14 mission to the Moon and the new era of space exploration underway. The project draws attention to the growing influence of commercial spaceflight as a way to highlight the often conflicting views on the future of space exploration.
Apollo 14 astronauts Alan Shepard and Edgar Mitchell had two very significant and different experiences during their mission to the Moon. While Shepard famously hit two golf balls on the lunar landscape, Mitchell experienced a profound shift in his consciousness - now coined the Overview Effect.
Alan Shepard’s golf shots were his way to display the Moon's low gravity - however this seemingly innate human desire to ‘play’ also highlights the potential for space to be a site of commercial exploitation. The sport of golf, associated with leisure and luxury, was brought to a place where only four people had ever been before, marking an intersection where exploration, science, commercialisation, and colonisation began to blur.
While on the other hand, gazing out of the spacecraft's window at the distant Earth, Moon and Sun, Edgar Mitchell was overcome with a sense of interconnectedness, unity, and tranquility. He described this experience as a profound shift in awareness, feeling as if he had transcended the boundaries of his individual self and become intimately connected to the entirety of humanity and the planet.
Edgar Mitchell's experience serves as a reminder of the overpowering impact that space exploration can have on human consciousness. His journey to the Moon not only expanded our understanding of the cosmos but also deepened our connection to our home planet.
As we now find ourselves in a renewed era of space exploration, private enterprises fuelled by innovation and capital are becoming major players in this cosmic endeavour. The commercialisation of space has begun to redefine our relationship with the cosmos. These ventures promise not only scientific discovery but also economic potential, space tourism, and even the prospect of off-world colonies.
Habetebel sets out to consider how our continued exploration of space might continue to change humanity; and how might we change the places we continue to embark upon?
- Clayton Morgan, 2023
Clayton Morgan is a photographic artist whose work traverses the boundaries between documentary and conceptual photography.
Drawing inspiration from the world around him, Morgan explores complex issues, shedding light on the diverse range of societal challenges that shape our world. Through his lens, Morgan navigates the intricate interplay between fact and imagination, crafting imagery that provokes contemplation about past, present and future.
Clayton Morgan is based in Blenheim. He completed a Bachelor of Design with Honours (Photography) at Massey University, Wellington, in 2016 and a Master of Fine Arts at The University of Canterbury in 2019. 'Habetebel' is Clayton's first solo exhibition at Photospace Gallery. Previously, he was included in the group exhibition '4x5x6' curated by Thomas Slade in 2018.
'Habetebel' opens on Friday 15 September at 5pm and runs from 16 September to 7 October, 2023.
Gallery hours are 10am-3pm Mon-Fri, 11am-2pm Sat., closed Sundays and public holidays.
After hours viewing by appointment. Contact info.
'End of Decade - 1979' exhibition extended to 7th October
The exhibition by Colin W. Anstis has been extended by a month. The gallery will be closed on Wednesday , 13th September, otherwise open normal hours.
'End of Decade - 1979' opens in Room 3 of Photospace Gallery on Friday 11th August, 5pm-7pm. You are most welcome to attend. (Alannah Gunter's exhibition 'Travelling Light' is also opening in Gallery Room 1.)
Colin's exhibition includes A2-sized archival pigment prints of 11 of the photos from his book of the same title.
Copies of the book are available for $45.00 - payment by Eftpos, Paywave, Visa, Mastercard.
The origins of my exhibition have their foundation in my book " End of Decade 1979" being a collection of 133 images of Wellington City and the Greater Wellington Region taken by me in early 1979; the book was self-published in 2022.
The actual origin of everything was my attendance at a Photo-Forum photography workshop in early January 1979
(conducted by noted photographer John B. Turner). Following the workshop I undertook a part-time, four-month photographic project mainly of Wellington City and the Wairarapa, which resulted in, to name but a few, images of a fruit and vegetable market, a hot rod show, an Anzac Day parade, Wellington wharf, a fire brigade callout, and various race meetings. This culminated in the publishing of my book some 43 years later and, now, a kind invitation from Photospace Gallery to exhibit some of those images.
I have had a lifelong interest in photography, but would be the first to admit this hasn't always necessarily translated into the taking of especially large numbers of photographs. I have a particular interest in documentary photography, especially the images associated with the US Farm Security Administration Agency during the 1930's Great Depression, incl. the photographs of Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange and Arthur Rothstein. Images taken over the decades by many photographers engaged by the Magnum Photo agency are another area of interest. New Zealand photographers I admire incl. Brian Brake, John B. Turner and Ans Westra.
I am a resident of the leafy town of Cambridge, N.Z., and have a son and daughter who live in Tauranga.
Alannah Gunter - 'Travelling Light' exhibition at Photospace Gallery, Welington, 11 August to 9 September, 2023
Travelling Light - artist's statement
The digital interconnection of the world has effectively erased geographical barriers, as a virtual map of webcams allows us to connect in real-time with remote, yet carefully framed, landscapes. For over a decade, my art practice has delved into the spatial and temporal poetics of remote, networked cameras, primarily through photomedia and live-streaming video installations. These artworks reflect upon the transportive capabilities of outdoor cameras, not only in regard to vicarious travel but also in the manner that spaces of the imagination and the virtual can overlap and interweave. Travelling Light brings together three bodies of work that employ these devices in different ways.
The Proliferation of Nows (2014–18) is comprised of circles created from simultaneous screenshots of skies that I captured from webcams worldwide. The rings that compose the circle all align to a particular moment in time. Each circle is temporarily static–yet spatially stratified–despite depicting the immaterial sky, a symbol long associated with the dreamlike, ephemeral and boundless. They allude to portholes and explore the aesthetic experiences a viewer undergoes as their consciousness shifts between physical, virtual and psychological spaces.
The Line of Concurrence (2014–15) features collages constructed from images captured simultaneously on webcams at multiple locations (varying capacities to capture resolution, light and colour). These works reflect not only on the fragmentation of our world and its digital connectivity but also on the human longing to see beyond the horizon. While the physical horizon always remains beyond our reach, webcams extend it in a virtual sense, enabling our eyes to traverse cyberspace and discover new vistas. This series, created from snapshots of virtual journeys, examines the impact that technology has on our perception of space and time.
Luminous Forest (2020–2023) was created using wildlife cam-trap photographs from the Czech Republic. Mainly taken at night, these images offer a glimpse into a world often hidden from view. When a wild animal wandered into the camera’s view, motion sensors would trigger its shutter and the captured image would instantly be emailed to the forest ranger monitoring them, who very generously cc’d me into this system. I have reinterpreted these images by rephotographing them on an LCD screen and then further enhancing them with digital techniques that emulate traditional darkroom processing. Luminous Forest seeks to highlight the ways in which technology mediates our experience and shapes our understanding of the natural world.
Alannah Gunter - Bio
Alannah Gunter is a New Zealand artist based in Brisbane, Australia. She holds a BA(Hons) Photography from Nottingham Trent University, United Kingdom; a Master of Fine Art, Massey University; and a PhD Visual Arts, Queensland College of Art, Griffith University. Alannah has lectured in photography and photomedia at Massey University, Victoria University, and Queensland College of Art, Griffith University.
'Travelling Light' opens in Room 1 of Photospace Gallery on Friday 11 August, 5pm-7pm, and runs until 9 September, 2023.
Alannah Gunter has exhibited at Photospace Gallery in 1999 and 2001 (solo exhibitions), and in various group exhibitions since then.
Photography Matters II