Dynamic, Affordable, Apollo-free Residency

WE COLONISED THE MOON, Dynamic, affordable, Apollo-free Residency, Republic of the Moon, London 2014, presented by The Arts Catalyst. Photo: Alex Delfanne
WE COLONISED THE MOON Dynamic, Affordable, Apollo-free Residency, Republic of the Moon, London 2014, presented by The Arts Catalyst. Photo:  Alex Delfanne
WE COLONISED THE MOON, Entering Dynamic, Affordable, Apollo-free Residency. Photo: Alex Delfanne
WE COLONISED THE MOON Lunar Exploitation Remonstration

Hagen Betzwieser (Germany) and Sue Corke (UK) artists in residence in Republic of the Moon, London 2014

Sue Corke and Hagen Betzwieser met by chance in 2008 conducting artistic field work at a bus stop in Norway. Working for the last four years as WE COLONISED THE MOON their graphic art and installation projects have embodied a child-like wonder of the universe. Employing a range of DIY production techniques their partnership is rooted in absurdism and theatrical performance, characterised by slogans and catchphrases.  Together they seek to demonstrate that the future may indeed be frightening, but also highly entertaining.

Previous projects have included creating solutions for space waste elimination by disguising satellites as asteroids; building a solar powered solarium because ‘the sun dies anyway’ and synthesising the smell of the moon.  They presented a new commission, Enter At Own Risk and Crash - moonlanding workshops for young poeple for Republic of the Moon, Liverpool and have been involved in several Kosmica events at Arts Catalyst.

As artists in residence throughout Republic of the Moon, the residency will evolve in the space and includes a series of participatory events about religious, political and economic approaches to colonising the moon.

Lunar Exploitation Remonstration

Drop-in protest slogan and placard open studio.  Saturday 25 January 11am-3pm.  Free, not suitable for under-12s

Drop-in open studio day for visitors to meet artists-in-residence WE COLONISED THE MOON, continue to debate about the future of the Moon and to pitch their protest slogan for or against the exploitation of the Moon.  Seven solgans will be selected for the the Lunar Exploitation Remonstration and made into placards.

Open Think Tank Late Breakfast

Round table discussion about the concept of moon colonisation, asking: “Should We Colonise the Moon?”.  What's the future for the Moon – theme park or quarry? Saturday 11 January, 11am-1pm, free event

The discussion may act as the stimulus for further dialogue between participants later on in Republic of the Moon. It may be the seed of revolution, or the binding of consensus – the initiation of a movement towards rebellion or treatise.  On the panel are representatives of science, politics, theology, philosophy, and art.

Benedict Singleton describes himself as a strategist with a background in design and philosophy. He is the author of the forthcoming book The Long Con, an alternative history of design, and regularly writes on the politics and philosophy of technology for publications including Architectural Design and E-Flux. He has lectured at the Architectural Association, the Royal College of Art, the Bartlett School of Architecture, and internationally. His 2013 essay for E-Flux on space travel, Maximum Jailbreak, considers the earth as a trap, and asserts that the common project of philosophy, economics and design should be the formulation of the means to escape from it."

Ian Crawford is Professor of Planetary Science and Astrobiology at Birkbeck College, University of London. His research is mainly concerned with lunar science and exploration, and  he has a significant interest in the future of space exploration. He is currently Senior Secretary of the Royal Astronomical Society and a member of the Space Sciences Committee of the European Science Foundation. In 2003 he was a member of the European Space Agency's Human Spaceflight Vision Group, which recommended that ESA participates in  establishing an international moon base. He believes that space exploration should be an international, global, activity that can act as a unifying endeavour for humanity.“

Rev Dr Jeremy Law is the Dean of Chapel for Canterbury Christ Church University. He conducts theological research at the Department of Theology & Religious Studies. In 2013, he gave a lecture at Canterbury on The Redemption of Evolution at the conference on Wildlife and Society: Challenges for a Shared Future. The conference promoted the discussion of issues related to the relationships between people and wildlife in the context of sustainable living, education and professional development for a shared future.

Read more about the Open Think Tank Late Breakfast debate about colonising the Moon, in the 'We Make Money Not Art' Blog here.

Live moon smelling

part of Kosmica: Full Moon Party, Thursday 16 January 2014

WE COLONISED THE MOON have engineered a macro microencapsulation process to create a LIVE Moon Smelling experience.  Their concept is a massively scaled up version of the chemical process of microencapsulation - a technique that traps aromas in nanosized shell like capsules - first used for their MOON Scratch & Sniff prints in 2010. In this macro version the scent is encapsulated in helium filled balloons. The moment the balloons pop the smell of the moon explodes into the atmosphere creating an immersive transitory experience which rapidly dissipates, leaving only the memory of a place which is neither here nor there.

The smell itself is based on the reports of Apollo astronauts who on returning from the surface of the moon to the landing module experienced a unique odour for the very first time. Created for WCTM in 2010 by Steve Pearce of Omega Ingredients. The synthesised scent also formed a key element of the artists work, Enter At Own Risk, which was first exhibited for Republic of the Moon, FACT Liverpool, 2012, commissioned jointly by Arts Catalyst and FACT.


Republic of the Moon is a touring exhibition, commissioned by The Arts Catalyst with FACT. The first version of the exhibition was presented at FACT Liverpool in winter 2012. The exhibition and residency has been made possible with Grants for the Arts support from Arts Council England and Science & Technology Facilities Council.

Bargehouse is owned and managed by social enterprise, Coin Street Community Builders: www.coinstreet.org