Mental journey

Nancy Graves – Lunar Orbiter and Apollo Landing Site

Nancy Graves, IV Julius Caesar Quadrangel of the Moon, from the series Lunar Orbiter and Apollo Landing Site, 1972, color lithographs on paper, folder with ten sheets, Ludwig Forum für Internationale Kunst Aachen, loan of the Peter and Irene Ludwig Foundation, © Nancy Graves Foundation, photo: Anne Gold

July 1969 – the United States win the race for the Moon and cause thereby a fascination in the strange celestial body. Nancy Graves revisits this fascination and uses NASA satellite images from the lunar surface to visualize the core of her artistic exploration: She creates a link between scientific insight and creative expression. 

Earlier, Graves had already created drawings and paintings related to maps and charts of remote geographic regions such as the ocean floor or Antarctica. Her lunar works map terrains that neither Graves nor the viewer could ever verify through direct experience. Unlike a camel in the zoo, these areas exist solely asmental visions and are, therefore, entirely fictitious grounds.


All ten sheets of the folder are on display in the exhibition.