Select Page

Event ID:  45414
Contact Name:  Rory Williams
Contact Email:
Contact Phone: 
Organization:  Art Matters Now
Event Web Site:
Dates:  7th October 2021 to 15th October 2021
Physical Event:  Yes
Type:  Public
Start/End Type:  Starts During WSW
Country:  United Kingdom
State/Province:  Tyne and Wear
City:  Sunderland
Address:  The Moving Gallery, The Athenaeum, 27 Fawcett Street
Location:  The Moving Gallery
Event Name:  Escape Velocity: The Human Spaceship
Event Description:  ESCAPE VELOCITY — THE HUMAN SPACESHIP Solo Exhibition by Helen Schell Venue: The Moving Gallery, The Athenaeum, 27 Fawcett St, Sunderland, SR1 1RE Exhibition dates: 7-31 October 2021 Opening times: Thursday–Sunday 11 am – 4 pm (also open by appointment) This event is part of World Space Week (4–10 Oct) - (Themes: Women in Space & Satellites Improve Life) About the Exhibition We are truly moving into a new space age. Within 5 years, we can anticipate the launching of rockets from UK soil, with spaceports being built in Scotland and Torquay. NASA will be sending the first woman and next man to the Moon in 2024, with plans to construct a permanent moonbase. Escape Velocity is an art exhibition informed by these recent breakthroughs and the current dilemmas in space exploration. It confronts the viewer with bold and expressive paintings of rockets and spaceships, characterised by geometric optical illusions which resonate with the 1960s movement of ‘Op Art’. Through these artworks, the artist poses the question: Has the advent of new technology enabled a glorious space adventure—or rather, an impending exodus from the worsening environmental problems that we have inflicted on our planet Earth? Helen Schell’s artworks depict humanity’s quest to leave Earth and explore the unknown regions of space, which has been made possible by human spaceflight and new technology. Produced under the umbrella project The Human Spaceship, she investigates interplanetary migration and concepts of alien societies, shedding light on the evolution of humanity in hostile, off-world environments. Her creative process focuses on manipulating visual perception in altered gravity. It experiments with her idea that ‘space is like a giant optical illusion, there is no “right way up”, or aerial perspective.’ Escape Velocity coincides with the reopening of The Moving Gallery in central Sunderland. The majority of the exhibited artworks were produced over the summer of 2021 during her participation in the Broadside Creatives Residency in Sunderland. They consist of both menacing and appealing rockets and spaceships, which have been part of an ongoing project started in 2018. Amongst the exhibits are a series of spaceship paintings inspired by the isolation and restrictions of the current pandemic, which have drawn similarities to the conditions of space living. These works include: ‘The Pin’, ‘The Spike’, ‘The Spine’ and ‘The Cutter’. The show also features ‘Big Red Rocket’, which catches the eye with its striking colours and monumental size. Tours & Talks (dependant on Covid rules and restrictions) We aim to present a series of talks and gallery tours for the public, schools, colleges and universities. A virtual reality exhibition tour will also be available. For more information, please visit the website and social media platforms of Art Matters Now. Artist Biography (please see the weblinks for further information) Helen Schell is a visual artist and space science educator based in Sunderland. Her artworks take the form of paintings, installations and smart materials costumes. In her creative practice, she employs optical illusion art, using geometry to manipulate colour, line, form and light. She is particularly interested in long-term human spaceflight and future settlements on the Moon and Mars. Over 14 years, this work has led to her collaborating with space scientists from many UK universities. She visited leading human spaceflight scientists at NASA Johnson Space Center, USA in 2019 for research purposes and to inform her space-themed projects. As a specialist, she has gained several awards for her creative work. She won the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Moon 3D Printing Competition for a Moon garden design. Moon-shot: Woman on the Moon, her solo show at Ely Cathedral, won the IAU100 Moon Landing 50 Prize for Most Innovative Event (worldwide). In 2019, she had the distinction of being the first artist to be presented with the Sir Arthur C Clarke Award for Space Outreach, also winning the team award in 2020 as part of the SunSpaceArt team. She devises and presents space-themed workshops and presentations for 4000 children and adults annually. This work includes international art residencies in the USA, Canada, Cuba and Europe as well as many UK residencies. Weblinks for further information: The Human Spaceship – Off Balance, VR exhibition. Oct 2020 Previous projects by Helen Schell SunSpaceArt - STEAM Education Projects linked to space science Contact details For further information or images please contact: Rory Williams & Christie Chan, Producers of Art Matters Now Email: Website: Instagram: @artmattersnow Facebook: @artmattersnow Twitter: @artmattersnowuk The Moving Gallery This innovative multimedia gallery launched in 2021, in the heart of Sunderland's city centre and within the new cultural hub of Breeze Creatives. The gallery space is currently run by Art Matters Now (AMN), a tech-driven curatorial initiative that engages artists and the public in discussions of social issues.⁣ AMN was founded by a two-person team passionate about supporting and promoting regional artists. This exhibition is made possible with support from the Sunderland Culture Creative Development Fellowship 2021. The Exhibition Venue is generously provided by Breeze Creatives
Promotional Image: 
Report on the Results: 
Attendance:  0
Attendance is Unique: 
Media Impressions:  0
Media Impressions are Unique: 

Event Years:  2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020 | 2021 | 2022 | 2023

Translate »