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Structure excluding crane 2.5m (diameter) x 4.3m (h)
Polycarbonate structure in the form of a domestic light bulb, which is suspended from a 30m tall tower crane. Hundreds of tiny lights illuminate the contours of the 'bulb'.
A temporary installation Brett's Aggregates, Whitstable, commissioned for Sparks by Canterbury City Council.
Claire Morgan's aspiration for this artwork was to create a striking focal point in the night sky, to make people pause and ponder. The work played with the scale of the site, the wharf and plant of Brett Aggregates in Whitstable Harbour and celebrated the contrasts that exist between different aspects and uses of the site. Claire made the viewer deliberate over their pre-conceived notions of inside and outside, the domestic and the industrial but also importantly the familiar and the unknown.
At times the installation appeared to be faulty or incomplete, the intermittent flickering was intended to look erratic and possibly unintentional. The position of the 'bulb', hung from a crane within a working industrial site, made the viewer feel as if the work was 'in progress'. The completion of the work was its eventual removal, achieving the artist's aim that the work seemed to be in constant transition. The title of the work 'A New Moon' suggests that it may touch on environmental issues, though from a contemplative view point rather than with any overtly political notions in mind. The processes involved in creating the work immediately undermined any wish to broach serious environmental questions. At the same time it conveyed an element of futility; in this case trying to light the night sky, replicate or out-do nature, using industrial processes and materials. For Claire this was an important part of the work, to mirror or acknowledge the notion that all our attempts, positive or negative, to live and work at odds with nature will inevitably be futile. Everything is ultimately affected by universal cycles of life and death. The positioning of the work in relation to its surroundings; the smallness of the factory, the crane and the bulb, against the vast backdrop of sky and water served to emphasise these facts.
The text above was written by Sarah von Holstein of InSite Arts Ltd and comes from a publication entitled Sparks, documenting three contemporary light commissions for Canterbury, Herne Bay and Whitstable.
All photos taken by Paul Grundy.