We Are Made of Stardust

by Michaela Gleave

We Are Made of Stardust

We Are Made of Stardust by artist Michaela Gleave was commissioned for Kelly’s Garden as part of the Three Portraits Project, which explores Salamanca Art Centre’s past, present and future, a project supported by the Tasmanian Community Fund.

The installation explores humanity’s relationships with the cosmos, reflecting on the impact that scientific knowledge has on our understanding of ourselves, and the world around us. Mounted above the audience and addressing the sky, the text looks out beyond the city to contemplate the vast expanses of time and space. Appearing subtle white during the day, the work comes alive at night as the illuminated letters become visible against the darkened sky. Scrolling through the colours of the visible light spectrum, We Are Made of Stardust considers both the limitlessness and finitude of existence; a celebration of the beauty and majesty of the universe.

Accompanying the lettering is a live soundscape from the project, A Galaxy of Suns. Created in collaboration with composer Amanda Cole, programmer Warren Armstrong and astronomer Michael Fitzgerald, A Galaxy of Suns ‘plays’ the stars as they rise and set over the horizon in real-time, for any location on Earth. Treating the Earth as a giant spinning music box, the project connects GPS and time coordinates to data from the Hipparcos stellar catalogue, to create an atmospheric rendering of our journey through space.

Michaela Gleave

Michaela Gleave is a visual artist based in Sydney, Australia. Gleave’s projects question our relationship to time, matter and space, focusing in particular on the changing intersections between art, science and society. Often temporal, Gleave’s works oscillate between the micro and the macro, between the spaces of personal experience and global understanding, allowing us to experience the processes by which we comprehend reality and rethink our presence within it.

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In recognition and reflection of the deep history and culture of this island, we also wish to acknowledge the Tasmanian Aboriginal community, who are the traditional owners and continued custodians of the land and waters of lutruwita (Tasmania).

Image Credits: Artwork by Michaela Gleave (2018). All photographs by Rosie Hastie.