Artist Talk: The Other Night Sky: Destiny, Warfare, and Ruins Among the Stars

September 30, 2011
Event Types
Talk / Lecture
Guests are seated on small stools around a woman with dark hair and glasses who is leading the lecture inside the gallery space.

Gallery talk as part of Gwenneth Boelens: At Odds at MIT List Visual Arts Center in 2017.

Social scientist, artist, writer, and provocateur, Trevor Paglen has been exploring the secret activities of the US military and intelligence agencies–the “black world”–for the last eight years, publishing, speaking, and making astonishing photographs.

As an artist, Paglen is interested in the idea of photography as truth-telling, but his pictures often stop short of traditional ideas of documentation. In the series Limit Telephotography, for example, he employs high-end optical systems to photograph top-secret governmental sites; and in The Other Night Sky, he uses the data of amateur satellite watchers to track and photograph classified spacecraft in Earth’s orbit. In other works Paglen transforms documents such as passports, flight data, and aliases of CIA operatives into art objects.