The Final frontier
The multi-channel installation "Final Frontier" (2021) by Winnie Claessens transports the viewer to the far reaches of cosmic space. A scale model of a satellite references the launch of the unmanned spacecraft Voyager I and Voyager II in 1977, which aimed to gain new insights about our solar system. The romantic thinking of the 1970s led to the production of the "Voyager Golden Record," a phonograph record included with the two spacecraft, containing sounds and images intended to represent the diversity of life and culture on Earth.
Claessens' installation also includes a video on four screens, in which the scale model plays a central role once again. In this video work, the spacecraft displays its personality and seems to communicate with the viewer. "Final Frontier" builds upon the utopian—and perhaps naive—imagination that often underlies space exploration endeavors. The focus is on humanity's hope to make contact with extraterrestrial life and become part of an Interstellar Union.
Text by Arash Shahali
Photos by Tomas Uyttendaele