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Thursday, October 18 • 11:00am - 11:20am
Converging Art and Astronomy: New Perspectives on Lunar Nomenclature and Exoplanet Research

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Artist, gallerist, and art-science researcher Bettina Forget will talk about her project Women With Impact, a series of drawings of Moon craters which are named after women, and her work as artist-in-residence at the Mont-Mégantic Observatory.

The project Women With Impact is a response to the underrepresentation of women in the historical record in the field of science. Out of the 1,605 named craters on the lunar surface, 29 are named after women – that is a meager 1.8%. To highlight this issue, Bettina Forget decided to research the locations of the lunar craters named after women using data from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. After capturing the most detailed images of the craters possible, she created a series of 29 drawings on paper.
A crater is essentially a void, a hollow in the regolith. The void echoes the underrepresentation of women in positions of power, in the scientific canon, and in history. The void also speaks to its opposite: each crater is a result of an impact, a shattering of the calm surface. The 29 women who made such an impact are thrown into full relief with each drawing.
The series Women With Impact fuses the aesthetics of drawing with a socio-political perspective and selenographic research to create a project which bridges art and science.

For her artist residency at the Mont-Mégantic Observatory, Exoplanet Zoo proposed to create a taxonomy of exoplanets in sculptural form with the use of 3D printing technology. To create the collection of exoplanet prints, data sets associated with exoplanets were integrated into the source code of a 3D model of a plain sphere, generating a variety of exoplanet “species.” The exoplanet’s data sets include information regarding the planet’s size, mass, inclination, distance from the host star, rotation period, atmospheric composition, etc. The 3D printed sculptures blur the boundaries between organic and inorganic forms, referencing seeds, cells, and diatoms as well as geometric, crystalline structures. As such, the artworks create a link to astrobiology and ponder the possibility of life in the universe. The menagerie of sculptures makes the variances and characters of exoplanet tangible, and explore a variety of classification options.

avatar for Bettina Forget

Bettina Forget

President, Visual Voice Gallery
Bettina Forget is a gallery owner, art educator, visual artist, and art/science researcher living and working in Montreal, Canada. Bettina owns and runs Visual Voice Gallery, which presents contemporary art exhibitions that create a dialogue between art and science. Since 2016 Bettina... Read More →

Thursday October 18, 2018 11:00am - 11:20am EDT
Room CD Concordia Conference Center, MB Building 9th floor, 1450 Guy St, Montreal, QC H3H 0A1