Tanja Hehmann, Contortor © Helgemundt

Art meets science in DESY "Dark Matter" exhibition

Art works become objects of research at DESY

Some 15 artists will exhibit their works on “dark matter” from Friday (October 13, 2017) at DESY in Hamburg-Behrenfeld. The exhibition, held in co-operation with the Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft, is the result of an exchange between scientists and artists who have created paintings, graphic images, photographs and movies, sculptures, installations as well as sound and multimedia works on dark matter. Research will continue in the test halls housing the month-long exhibition and will see the art works become objects of research as well.

Fresh perspective, new eye-level alliances

Dr. Carsten Brosda, Minister for Culture and Media, noted: “Thinking outside the box and breaking up patterns of thought and perception in complex times is a key skill. This is the starting point for Hamburg Kreativ GmbH’s new work focus 'cross-sector co-operation in the creative industry’. This opens up fresh perspectives and new eye-level alliances. The collaboration with DESY is a fantastic enrichment for all those involved.”

Egbert Rühl, Managing Director of Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft, said: “Research is conducted not only in science. Art can also be research. The collaboration between scientists and artists is a good example of a cross-border approach to a subject from different perspectives with various methods of resolution and which allows people to learn from each other.”

Artistic views of research

Prof. Dr. Helmut Dosch, Chairman of the DESY Directorate, said: “Art and science are two important pillars of our society. DESY wishes to establish the context between them with the dark matter project and make it transparent. We at DESY are striving to shift the boundaries of science and to broaden horizons. However, we do this only in a scientific analytic manner. The artistic view of dark matter is not only great fun, it is also very inspiring for our research.“

Prior to public tours of the exhibition, the Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft will moderate rounds of discussion between artists and scientists to highlight their work and show interfaces between them. The work is likely to mark the start of a longer collaboration process.

Dark matter – 85 per cent of universe’s material

In the search for the mysterious dark matter, physicists have used elaborate computer calculations to come up with an outline of the particles of this unknown form of matter. So far, the particles have not been proven in experiments. But observations and calculations on the rotation speed of galaxies or gravitational effects in space show that dark matter accounts for some 85 per cent of material in the entire universe. Physicists believes that dark matter consists of hitherto unknown particles and the search is undertaken in the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator like “The Large Hadron Collider” at CERN in Geneva in which DESY is also involved, and elswhere.

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Dates of Exhibition

The exhibition is free and will be open to the public on the following dates. Please register on the DESY website before your visit.

13.10. Opening (from 7 pm)
18.10. Speech and tour (from 7 pm)
25.10. Speech and tour (from 7 pm)
31.10. International Dark Matter Day including short films (from 3 pm)
04.11. DESY DAY (Open House Day at DESY) (12 noon to midnight)
08.11. Speech and tour (from 7 pm)
09.11. Close (from 7 pm)

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