a dream of big science - cyanotype

a dream of big science

Maritime expeditions in the Age of Enlightenment were motivated mainly by scientific curiosity.  HMS Challenger set sail from Portsmouth in 1872 to investigate the natural history and geology of the ocean floor. Challenger circumnavigated the globe for three and half years, covering almost 70,000 nautical miles.  The crew dredged up thousands of samples and mapped…

expedition - cyanotype

expedition

The Challenger Expedition followed in the footsteps of many other maritime expeditions.  This image features a map from the Challenger Report, showing the routes taken by the prinicpal expeditions, from the first voyage of Captain Cook through to the Challenger Expedition. Cyanotype Varied edition: 10 prints

challenger deep cyanotype

challenger deep

Challenger Deep is the deepest known point in the Earth’s seabed hydrosphere, with a depth of about 11,000 metres.  It is found at the southern end of the Mariana Trench in the Pacific Ocean. It is named after HMS Challenger, whose crew made the first measurements of its depth.  Only four vehicles have descended into…

the honeycomb conjecture - cyanotype

the honeycomb conjecture

On watching Brian Cox …. Forces of Nature The honeycomb conjecture: one possible reason for the hexagonal structure of the bee’s honeycomb is efficiency – hexagonal tiling enables bees to create equal-sized cells using the least amount of material. Cyanotype Varied edition: 3 prints This image is available to buy as fabric by the yard…

navigate cyanotype

navigate

Cyanotype Varied edition: 30 prints “The attention of navigators was fully taken up  with the perfecting of their science,  the development of nautical astronomy, the study of the forces which control the magnetic needle, the discovery of the longitude, the search for new lands and new routes.” -Narrative of the Cruise of HMS Challenger

the oceanographer's memory box

the oceanographer’s memory box

This boxed assemblage incorporates text & images from the Report on the Scientific Results of the Voyage of HMS Challenger During the Years 1873-76, paper, shells, glass bottles, twine, an HMS Challenger commemorative stamp and a Challenger Space Shuttle commemorative medal. Assemblage 255x205x60mm (closed) – 410x 255mm (open) Sold “Man cannot discover new oceans unless…

Challenger book

challenger book

Challenger (hardback) An exploration By Alice Strange Book Preview “The vast ocean lay scientifically unexplored  All the efforts of the previous decade had been directed to the strips of water around the coast and to enclosed or partially enclosed seas; great things had certainly been done there, but as certainly far greater things remained to…

the horticulturalist's dream - cyanotype

the horticulturalist's dream

The elusive blue rose …. Roses apparently lack a gene that can produce a true blue colour.  Blue roses are usually created by dyeing white roses. Cyanotype c. 5x23cm £40 “Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done.”   Robert A Heinlein

we have all the time in the world

we have all the time in the world?

Louis Armstrong singing “We have all the time in the world” is one of my desert island discs. “We have only 10 billion years until the supply of hydrogen in the Sun’s core is exhausted and it enters its Red Giant phase, rendering Earth uninhabitable” was probably difficult to match to a melody and definitely…

Hawking's nemesis

hawking’s nemesis

The event horizon hypothesis is replaced by the apparent horizon hypothesis. Laser-cut plywood Diameter c. 40cm Sold I used to think information was destroyed in black holes.  This was my biggest blunder, or at least my biggest blunder in science.” -stephen hawking

Hawking's nemesis

hawking's nemesis

The event horizon hypothesis is replaced by the apparent horizon hypothesis. Laser-cut plywood Diameter c. 40cm Sold I used to think information was destroyed in black holes.  This was my biggest blunder, or at least my biggest blunder in science.” -stephen hawking

refract ii

refract ii

Snell’s window is a phenomenon by which an underwater viewer sees everything above the surface through a cone of light, caused by refraction of light entering the water. The area outside Snell’s window will either be completely dark or reflect underwater objects. Textile panel c.  80x120cm Sold

refract i

refract i

Snell’s window is a phenomenon by which an underwater viewer sees everything above the surface through a cone of light, caused by refraction of light entering the water. The area outside Snell’s window will either be completely dark or reflect underwater objects. Textile panel c. 80x120cm £150

tapa

tapa

Tapa cloth is made in many Pacific islands, including Tonga and Fiji. The Challenger expedition report notes its use for clothing. Digital collage Limited edition: 10 prints 36x150cm

abyss

abyss

“Abyss” is from the Greek word ἄβυσσος, meaning bottomless. The abyssal zone of the oceans – 4-6 km – is perpetually dark and cold and silent. Inhabitants, such as the deep-sea anglerfish and the giant squid, must withstand immense pressure. The deepest trenches in the ocean, such as the Mariana Trench in the Pacific, are…

memento murray

memento murray

John Murray (1841-1914), a pioneering oceanographer, was Wyville Thomson’s assistant on HMS Challenger’s 1872-76 expedition to explore the oceans. The publication of the 50 volume report of the Challenger Expedition fell largely to Murray, who completed the task in 1896.  Murray had the Challenger Medal made at his own expense as a token of appreciation…

what lies beneath

what lies beneath

Oceanographer John Murray (1841-1914), HMS Challenger, some fish illustrations and a bathymetrical chart from the Murray & Hjort book The Depths of the Ocean. The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) was founded in 1884 (as the Scottish Marine Station) by Murray.  This collage was prepared to celebrate SAMS’s 130th anniversary. Digital collage

birth of a scientist

birth of a scientist

The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) was founded in 1884 (as the Scottish Marine Station) by Murray. This collage was made to celebrate SAM’s 130th anniversary. Digital collage In an address to his old school, Murray describes early experiments with electricity: “… several companions arrived from Stirling to see my experiments ; they had…

blueprint i - screenprint

blueprint i

The human genome is the complete set of human genetic information, stored as deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) sequences within the 23 chromosome pairs of the cell nucleus, and in a small DNA molecule within the mitochondrion.  The haploid human genome (contained in egg and sperm cells) consists of three billion DNA base pairs.  Genetic information is…

blueprint ii - screenprint

blueprint ii

The human genome is the complete set of human genetic information, stored as deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) sequences within the 23 chromosome pairs of the cell nucleus, and in a small DNA molecule within the mitochondrion.  The haploid human genome (contained in egg and sperm cells) consists of three billion DNA base pairs.  Genetic information is…

McCandless confirms .. - hms challenger NASA screenprint

McCandless confirms …

… that the moon is made of cheese. The legacy of the Challenger Expedition persists: more than a century after the expedition, NASA named a Space Shuttle after the ship.  On 3 February 1984, Bruce McCandless II took the first untethered spacewalk from Space Shuttle Challenger using a Manned Maneuvering Unit, subject of an iconic photograph…

Legacy - hms challenger NASA screenprint

legacy

The legacy of the Challenger Expedition persists: more than a century after the expedition, NASA named a Space Shuttle after the ship.  On 3 February 1984, Bruce McCandless II took the first untethered spacewalk from Space Shuttle Challenger using a Manned Maneuvering Unit, subject of an iconic photograph of an astronaut floating above the Blue Planet.…

corvette and frigates - screenprint

corvette & frigates

“H.M.S. Challenger, a steam corvette, with a spar upper deck, of 2306 tons displacement, and an indicated power of 1234 horses, was chosen for this [expedition] … All the guns were removed with the exception of two, and the space which they and the stores and ammunition in connection with them had occupied, was devoted…

to boldly go - digital

to boldly go

The legacy of the Challenger Expedition persists: more than a century after the expedition, NASA named the Apollo 17 lunar module and a Space Shuttle after the ship, and the Voyager I spacecraft, which left Earth in 1977, is travelling into interstellar space. Digital collage Limited edition: 10 prints 36x150cm

floating worlds - digital - hms challenger

floating worlds

“On the 11th, at 2.50 am, the first iceberg was sighted.  At 5 am sails were furled, and a sounding, trawling, and serial temperatures were taken in 1260 fathoms, Diatom ooze, Station 152.  Up to the time of the Expedition, about 500 species of radiolarian had been identified.  Challenger brought home more than 2,000 new…

aurora - digital

aurora

In investigating the strength and direction of the ocean currents, such as the Gulf Stream, when out of sight of land or unable to anchor a boat, observations of the heavenly bodies are the only resource … Digital collage Limited edition: 10 prints 36x150cm “The ship remained at Halifax from the 9th to the 19th…

challenger iii - digital

challenger iii

“The vast ocean lay scientifically unexplored  All the efforts of the previous decade had been directed to the strips of water around the coast and to enclosed or partially enclosed seas; great things had certainly been done there, but as certainly far greater things remained to be done beyond. This consideration led to the conception…

schrodingers cat iii - screenprint

schrödinger's cat iii

Erwin Schrödinger devised a thought experiment to illustrate the problem of applying the 1935 Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics to everyday objects.  Featuring the Dirac constant used in the Schrödinger equation, a partial differential equation that describes how the quantum state of a physical system changes with time. Screenprint 23x39cm Edition:35 £45

schrodingers cat iii - screenprint

schrödinger’s cat iii

Erwin Schrödinger devised a thought experiment to illustrate the problem of applying the 1935 Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics to everyday objects.  Featuring the Dirac constant used in the Schrödinger equation, a partial differential equation that describes how the quantum state of a physical system changes with time. Screenprint 23x39cm Edition:35 £45

artefacts - digital

artefacts

“The morning after the Expedition arrived trade went on briskly, the canoes crowding around the ship, and the natives handing their weapons and ornaments through the main deck ports.  The barter given in exchange was principally ordinary hoop iron broken up into pieces about 6 inches in length; but a great deal of so-called “trade…

red giant

A red giant star is a dying star in the last stages of stellar evolution. In only a few billion years, our own sun will turn into a red giant star, expand and engulf the inner planets, possibly even Earth. Screen print 30x30cm Edition:6 £100 “We have all the time in the world …” Louis…

Supermassive black hole - screenprint

supermassive black hole

A black hole is a region of spacetime where it is thought that gravity prevents anything, including light, from escaping.   A supermassive black hole is the largest type of black hole. Screenprint 30x30cm Edition:10 £100 “Black holes are where God divided by zero.” einstein

the art of science ii - digital collage

the art of science ii

Physicists believe that everything is made from a few fundamental subatomic particles, governed by four fundamental forces. Their best understanding of how these particles and three of the forces are related to each other is captured by the Standard Model of particle physics. A thing of beauty, if incomplete … gravity and dark matter are…

the art of science i

the art of science i

Physicists believe that everything is made from a few fundamental subatomic particles, governed by four fundamental forces. Their best understanding of how these particles and three of the forces are related to each other is captured by the Standard Model of particle physics. A thing of beauty, if incomplete … gravity and dark matter are…

redheads

redheads

Acrylic & gold leaf on wood 10x10x30cm Sold “Across the entire human population, only 1-2% has red hair in its various shades.   But in Scotland 13% of our 5 million people are redheads and about 30% carry one of the genetic variants needed to pass that characteristic  from one generation to the next.” Alistair Moffat,…

Picts II

picts ii

The term Pict generally refers to the people who lived in the far north of Scotland.  Their story is relatively undocumented, apart from a scattering of decorated stones and artefacts, created between 400-900AD.  This work features  notched rectangle designs found on some carved stones. DNA analysis has identified a genetic marker – R1bstr47, or R1b-Pict…

picts i

picts i

The term Pict generally refers to the people who lived in the far north of Scotland.  Their story is relatively undocumented, apart from a scattering of decorated stones and artefacts, created between 400-900AD. Pictii probably means painted or tattooed people: it was observed by contemporary commentators that individuals were tattooed to indicate their rank and…

genome i

genome i

The human genome is the complete set of human genetic information, stored as deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) sequences within the 23 chromosome pairs of the cell nucleus, and in a small DNA molecule within the mitochondrion.  The haploid human genome (contained in egg and sperm cells) consists of three billion DNA base pairs.  Genetic information is…

2125 fathoms - digital collage

2125 fathoms

At each sampling station, the crew determined the depth, measured temperature, trawled and dredged for samples at various depths between the surface and the sea floor.  On 31 January 1873, at a depth of 2150 fathoms, a new member of the Pennatulida family was dredged up – the phosphorescent Umbellula thomsonii. Digital collage Limited edition:…

challenger II - digital collage

challenger ii

The Royal Navy ship HMS Challenger was a three-masted corvette with an auxiliary steam engine.  The ship was modified for scientific work, with laboratories for natural history and chemistry. Digital collage Limited edition: 10 prints 36x150cm

on the shoulders of giants - digital collage

on the shoulders of giants

The Challenger Expedition built on the work of the many philosophers, explorers and scientists who, in the past, had tried to understand the ocean. On the shoulders of giants features the crew of HMS Challenger, with the names of some of the people and ships that went before them. Digital collage Limited edition: 10 prints…

atlantic - digital collage

atlantic

“Challenger left Santa Cruz, Tenerife, on the evening of the 14th February. The weather was bright and pleasant, with a light breeze from the northeast. A southwesterly course was pursued for a few days, until well within the northern limit of the trade wind, after which the route followed was, as nearly as practicable, in…