Mother Earth Sister Moon

in collaboration with Joanna Malinowska
2009
Installation, space suit 10’x45’x26’/300x1400x800cm, scaffolding, tyvek, canvas, clear plastic, foam, steel fiberglass, carpet, white paint, fluorescent light, chair, milk bar, sound by Masami Tomihisa and Pancerne Rowery, 39 costumes, dimensions variable

 

Mother Earth Sister Moon is a collaborative project between Joanna Malinowska and C.T. Jasper.  Focusing mostly in the realm of cinema, the work examines how Eastern European science fiction stood out in comparison to its Western counterpart, how it fueled the dreams of the future, how it was used to spread Marxist propaganda, and how it was later used as a tool of anti-government expression.  The project explores how the future was imagined under the Communist regimes of the former Soviet Bloc by investigations through the lenses of architecture, music, fashion and style.  The project also incorporates other elements related to a diverse range of Eastern Bloc phenomenon, including the Soviet space program, sci-fi film and literature, and a journey to the site of the mysterious 1908 explosion over the Tunguska River Valley in central Siberia.

The research concerning these various elements manifests itself as a giant reconstruction of the suit worn by the first woman in space, Russian astronaut Valentina Tereshkova.  This suit pays tribute to the sculpture Hon-en katedral, an enormous female figure conceived by Niki de Saint Phalle and Jean Tinguely at the Moderna Museet in Stockholm in 1966.  Viewers of Mother Earth Sister Moon are invited to walk inside the giant sculpture and witness a fashion show—accompanied by the music of Japanese composer Masami Tomihisa—featuring both reconstructions and reinterpretations of designs that evoke the Soviet space program and unique aesthetics of Eastern European science fiction.  The installation also features two sets of film and culture oriented magazines that were published in Poland throughout the decades preceding the collapse of the Eastern Bloc, and while they may initially appear identical, Jasper has altered them.  In addition to the magazines, a set of industrial fans circulates occasional random trash throughout the gallery.  The final presentation also includes a new soundtrack compiling archival recordings of the 1980s band Pancerne Rowery, among other found bits and pieces.