Drawing on Space, Michelle Stuart, 2011

Queen's House closure

Visitor notice. On Friday 20 July the Great Hall, Tulip Stairs and some ground floor rooms will be closed. The rest of the Queen's House will remain open, including the iconic Armada Portrait of Elizabeth I.


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‘Drawing on Space’ forms part of Michelle Stuart’s recent body of work, in which she arranges astronomy-themed photographs in a grid, lending a narrative character to her poetic pieces.

It combines sights of star clusters, galaxies and nebulae with fireworks, on which Stuart has placed images of telescopic or photographic antique lenses. The lenses invite us to consider the importance of telescopes and cameras in the development of astronomical knowledge.

Speaking of this piece, Stuart questions why we look to the sky: “Do we put a lens on space because we feel alone? Or is it curiosity about the incomprehensible vastness of the universe? Does that cosmic energy, in fact, make us feel, not alone, but in some way complete?’ 

With its combination of celestial and man-made lightshows, ‘Drawing on Space’ reconciles forensic scrutiny with the wonders of space, suggesting at once the contemplative and euphoric nature of stargazing. 

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