PUBLIC WORKSHOP - SATURDAY 5 MARCH, 11am – 3pm Admission free

Every year billions of pounds is spent on space research - the UK spends approximately £270 million per year, while NASA’s budget in 2010 was $18 billion dollars. Powerful technologies, including high-resolution observation satellites, are developed and employed in various ways; for scientific research, military and civilian observation, communications, navigation, forecasting weather etc. Since the launch of the first man-made satellite, Sputnik 1, in 1957, thousands of satellites have been launched into orbit around the Earth, making up a substantial orbital environment. Secret Satellites draws our attention to this sophisticated technological world beyond our world, and asks who controls it and for what purposes? Who has access to it? How does it affect our lives, now and in the future?

As part of the exhibition project, Belfast Exposed would like to run a series of workshops with members of the public, facilitated by artist Joanna Griffin (see short artist biography below). The workshops will be an open-ended process, designed to talk/make/draw/think through our connections to satellites. At the 1st workshop Joanna will give a short presentation on her work and discuss similar workshop based projects that she has been involved in. The direction the workshop process takes after that will depend on what emerges from discussion with the group. For example the group may choose to look at the geostationary orbit, which is a ring of satellites that orbit at 36,000km above the equator and which is a phenomenal sculpture and engineering feat… Objects and documentation from the workshops will be presented in the gallery exhibition alongside astrophotography by Trevor Paglen, video installation by Simon Faithfull and projected animation by Aisling O’Beirn.

If you are an artist, scientist, amateur space enthusiast, or just someone who would be interested in participating in the workshop, please contact Rachel Brown or Brighdin Farren at //';l[1]='a';l[2]='/';l[3]='<';l[4]='|103';l[5]='|114';l[6]='|111';l[7]='|46';l[8]='|100';l[9]='|101';l[10]='|115';l[11]='|111';l[12]='|112';l[13]='|120';l[14]='|101';l[15]='|116';l[16]='|115';l[17]='|97';l[18]='|102';l[19]='|108';l[20]='|101';l[21]='|98';l[22]='|64';l[23]='|105';l[24]='|114';l[25]='|98';l[26]='|100';l[27]='|110';l[28]='|97';l[29]='|110';l[30]='|119';l[31]='|111';l[32]='|114';l[33]='|98';l[34]='>';l[35]='"';l[36]='|103';l[37]='|114';l[38]='|111';l[39]='|46';l[40]='|100';l[41]='|101';l[42]='|115';l[43]='|111';l[44]='|112';l[45]='|120';l[46]='|101';l[47]='|116';l[48]='|115';l[49]='|97';l[50]='|102';l[51]='|108';l[52]='|101';l[53]='|98';l[54]='|64';l[55]='|105';l[56]='|114';l[57]='|98';l[58]='|100';l[59]='|110';l[60]='|97';l[61]='|110';l[62]='|119';l[63]='|111';l[64]='|114';l[65]='|98';l[66]=':';l[67]='o';l[68]='t';l[69]='l';l[70]='i';l[71]='a';l[72]='m';l[73]='"';l[74]='=';l[75]='f';l[76]='e';l[77]='r';l[78]='h';l[79]=' ';l[80]='a';l[81]='<'; for (var i = l.length-1; i >= 0; i=i-1){ if (l[i].substring(0, 1) == '|') document.write("&#"+unescape(l[i].substring(1))+";"); else document.write(unescape(l[i]));} //]]> ">. The first workshop runs from 11am to 3pm on Saturday 5 March.

Information about the artist

Film and installation artist, Joanna Griffin has been researching satellites for some years, investigating the historical, economic and technological factors that have sustained the satellite as an elite, power-based technology controlled largely by a few nations, notably the United States and former Soviet Union, and closed institutions such as the military, scientific research centres and governments. Griffin has collaborated with scientists at Space Science Lab, UC Berkeley and the Mullard Space Science Laboratory (the UK's largest university-based space science research group) and developed numerous projects around space research. For more information visit

See Future Exhibitions for information about the exhibition Secret Satellites.

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