52 years on, since the pivotal moment in world history when in July 1969 the first man stepped foot on the moon the idea of space travel persists in modern conversation. Today, rather than Soviet Union versus America, it represents (in the mainstream) a squaring up between the richest men alive- Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, and their respective space travel projects. However this artist has other ideas - rather than treating the moon as a colonial or patriarchal space for ownership, conquest or personal gain this exhibition asks, "what claims are being made in relation to unmanned territories? What hierarchies and systems emerge? How can women assert themselves within patriarchal structures?" And perhaps also, what if interstellar exploration was a shared goal and communal achievement rather than an assertion of dominance?
Artist on the Moon is being developed alongside acknowledged institutions and scientists such as Bernard Foing, director of the International Lunar Exploration Working Group (ILEWG), EuroMoonMars, and former senior scientist at the European Space Agency (ESA). This year, while undergoing rigorous training programmes to gain the mental and physical fitness required for space travel, Borghildur is working with various international research groups, and carrying out a number of trips to scientific research centres across the globe. We discuss her most exciting project.
“Unlike previous missions to the Moon, which saw national flags raised and pieces of rock ripped from the surface and taken back to Earth, implying ownership or conquest, this project does not seek to claim dominion over anything. Rejecting colonial visions in favour of the peaceful gesture.”