We would imagine that London- and Hong Kong-based creative agency super/collider – of AnOther’s boundlessly enthralling Where On Earth column – has amassed quite the collection of fascinating vintage books about all things scientific over the ten years it’s been in existence. It was this milestone anniversary that inspired the collective to comb through their archives, as founder and creative director Chris Hatherill explains: “It felt like a good time to rummage through a decade’s worth of charity shop gold in our office and clear some space.” Enter out of this world collage artist Seana Gavin, who super/collider invited to create collages using imagery she found in said archives. “We asked Seana to interpret them and take things from ‘science’ to ‘science fiction’,” Hatherill says.
The three limited-edition pieces Gavin has created consist of mesmeric fantastical landscapes serving as testament to the artist’s interest in outer space. “When I was child growing up in Woodstock, New York – surrounded by mountainous scenery – I became obsessed with my father’s shelves of 60s visionary art books and science fiction novels,” she says. “This was also when I began my collection of crystals and minerals, as well as the origin of my fascination with life beyond our planet.”
The core aim behind this collaboration was to create timeless, ethereal environments inspired by recurring super/collider themes, including astronomy, botany and anthropology. According to Gavin, working from books from the 1960s and 1970s with a distinctive aesthetic gave her hand-cut collages the quality she hoped for: “I like to use vintage photography from this era as it has a grainy, dreamy effect and the colours come out more odd and painterly.” And dreamy the resulting imagery most certainly is: from the Statue of Liberty stood atop a bizarre cityscape in Liberty Sunset; gargantuan satellites and an astronaut floating across the sky in Time Traveller; or a rocket poised to launch into the twinkling black galaxy in Planetoid Life. Happy birthday, super/collider – to infinity and beyond.