Spiral Galaxy MGC 4565

A work made of gelatin silver print; edition 1/3.

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  • A work made of gelatin silver print; edition 1/3.

Date:

1981

Artist:

Sarah Charlesworth
American, 1947–2013

About this artwork

Spiral Galaxy MGC 4565 is part of In-Photography, a series that Sarah Charlesworth created in response to the critic Susan Sontag’s influential book On Photography (1977). Sontag, in the artist’s estimation, wrote from a standpoint outside photography, without engaging the material as well as the representational histories encoded in photographic technologies. Here Charlesworth appropriated a photograph from a scientific magazine and tore it into pieces to emphasize the scale and substance of her source image. She then photographed the collage greatly enlarged, as if to suggest its own dispersal into outer space. Using torn fragments, Charlesworth literalized the big bang theory, while at the same time thoroughly confusing a conventional sense of scale: the "original" image is rendered enormous, while what it portrays remains infinitely smaller than its cosmic subject.

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Photography

Artist

Sarah Charlesworth

Title

Spiral Galaxy MGC 4565

Origin

United States

Date

1981

Medium

Gelatin silver print; edition 1/3

Dimensions

119.5 × 165.5 cm

Credit Line

Photography Associates Fund

Reference Number

2012.63

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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