“Who knows whether this tumult of triangles inscribed in stone, first brought about by nature and then by art, does not contain one of the secret cyphers of the universe?" Callois
This work is a collaboration between two partners - photographer Casey Moore and illustrator Claire Alexander. The series comes from the artists’ fascination with the pattern inside meteorites, the theories surrounding them, and in particular the idea of Panspermia: that life on earth as we know it could have been started by the falling of a meteorite.
The four large prints of the series are part of a long-term project of photographing the inside patterns of iron meteorites, or proto-planets, which Casey first came across at the Greenwich Observatory. This lead to the artists accessing the Natural History Museum’s collection and their best examples of the phenomenon, known as the ‘Widmanstatten’ pattern, common in the iron meteorites thought to be the remnants of failed planets. It is as if the pattern could be a blue print of the universe’s DNA.
The smaller prints are made up of Casey’s photographs of all nine known meteorites to have landed in New Zealand (seven were in the natural History Museum in London and two were in separate museums in NZ – the Auckland Museum and Whanganui Museum) and Claire’s artistic response to these meteorites and the patterns and shapes they evoked within her via her intricate drawings.
The ‘collision’ that occurred once these two pieces of work met represents to the artists how meteorites are formed: the crashing together of space debris – random chaos creating something whole, containing inside it a particular intricacy and beauty.
Both processes the artists work with are entirely analog. Casey shoots on a large format film camera and prints by hand in his darkroom on fibre-based paper. Claire works with architectural pens and then turns her images into screen prints which are then overlaid onto the photographs.