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Our Night Skies

A commission by Lumen Studios, funded by Arts Council England Coronavirus Emergency Grant. The film was edited by John Hooper.


Lumen Studios have commissioned artists from all over the globe to create a time-lapse of the night sky. Artists filmed a time lapse of the night sky safely from their back yard, garden or isolated park. Looking up at the sky is a shared experience, and is an act that connects us to our distant ancestors as they would have seen a similar view. Due to the constellations differing depending on our position in the Northern and Southern hemisphere, we see the night sky from slightly different angles. By combining the views of the stars together in one video, we get a feeling of the Earth spinning through space from a range of vantage points. As a result, the video seems both disorientating and dizzying. During these times of coronavirus, we may feel as though we are not able to explore the landscape as we usually would. Instead, we hope that viewers may be encouraged to explore the universe above their head from their immediate surroundings. There are many things to be seen by looking up, and it helps us to connect to others that may be enjoying the view at the same time.

Commissioned Artists

Aki Poon (Hong Kong)
Aleks Borys (Poland)
Andreas Olesen (Denmark)
Ashwin Ezhumalai (India)
Dorothy Cheung (Hong Kong)
Yukako Tanaka (Japan)
Esther Hanko (The Netherlands)
Elody Libe (Montreal)
Gil Zablodovsky (Tel Aviv)
Jaz Morrison (England)
Jenny Akerlund (Sweden)
Joe Patrick Shellard (Scotland)
Karolin Schwab (Germany)
Louise Beer (New Zealand)
Madhu Das (India)
Nenad Nedeljkov (Serbia)
Pauline Woolley (England)
Roman Gaditskiy (Russia)
Thomas Lord (New Zealand)


Phases, Museum of Freemasonry, London, 2020
Venue: Museum of Freemasonry, South Gallery, 60 Great Queen Street, London, WC2B 5AZ
Dates: 20 February - 25 July 2020.

Lumen Studios are pleased to announce Phases, a new commission for the Museum of Freemasonry.

Wonder and storytelling are as much a part of the sky above us as science and understanding. We see our world mirrored in the sky and over the centuries we've created symbolism of the sun and moon as opposites, ruling the day and night and representing male and female.

Freemasons also use imagery of the day and night sky. They appear on many older aprons and in symbolic prints. Sometimes the lodge room ceiling has stars painted on it to remind those freemasons beneath of their place within the cosmos. Time moves on for us all, just as the phases of the moon appear in the night sky.

Phases has been produced by Lumen at the invitation of the Museum of Freemasonry to respond to freemasonry and our collection. Lumen are a London-based art collective, whose members are Louise Beer, Melanie King and Rebecca Huxley. Through the themes of astronomy and light they exhibit and curate exhibitions in churches, galleries and alternative venues. Including imagery from NASA’s Apollo missions, Phases brings contemporary art together with the craft of freemasonry to offer a new perspective on a subject with many facets

Eclipse, Vivid Projects, Birmingham, 2018

Eclipse (below) was re-imagined indoors for Vivid Projects studio associates programme. Lumen were commissioned by programme leader Antonio Roberts, to develop a brief and curate a group show for the associates, as well as create a new piece of work. Project link: Eclipse at Vivid Projects.

Eclipse, Green Man Festival, 2017

Eclipse consists of 2.5 metre wooden circle, stage light, and reflective fabric. Working to a short deadline, we created this large-scale eclipse, commissioned for Green Man 2017. The installation became a place for quiet contemplation and received positive feedback and press, in NME and other newspapers, as well as social media. Project link: Eclipse Green Man.

British Science Week - Aries on the Horizon, 2017

The British Science Association commissioned Lumen to create an art installation especially for St Peter’s Church in South Somercotes for British Science Week 2017. Lumen presented an installation representing the constellation of Aries. Lumen were keen to highlight the zodiac date for Aries, which began on 20th March until 19 April 2017. Lumen continue to be inspired both by scientific research and exploring cultural understandings based on visions of the night sky. Project link: Aries on the Horizon

Ivana Kupala Solstice, 2017

Ivana Kupala is an Eastern European summer solstice festival, dating back to pagan times and finds its origins in many European & Scandinavia cultures. This night historically marks the life cycle & passage of seasons, with the focus on celebrating life and fertility. For Ivana Kupala Lumen collaborated with Phytology Nature Reserve to curate celebration, Ukrainian tea ceremony, folk singing, astronomy talk by Paul Hill, telescopes pointing to the sun, moon and planets, fern blossom hunt, wish doll & herbal crown making. 

Project link: Ivana Kupala


Blue Dot Festival, 2017

Lumen Studios presented a series of artist films in the planetarium at Blue Dot Festival. The films explored a broad range of themes including: space exploration, ocular perception, our comprehension of time and visual metaphors on micro and macro scales.

The artists included: Hondartza Fraga, Claire Lymer and Rachel Dease, Lucent Matter: Kim Yip-Tong, Rose Leahy and Sylvana Lautier, Anna Dakin, Louise Beer and John Hooper, Rebecca Huxley and Tom Cowell, Sam Battle and Melanie King. Pictured Artwork: Claire Lymer.

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