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Greater Than You Can Possibly Imagine

tintype, engraved mirror, pine

8.5 x 5.5 x 2.5 in


Greater Than You Can Possibly Imagine features GN-z11, the most distant object known to humankind. Our collective awareness of this unimaginably enormous entity amounts to a pixelated blur. All we can sense of it is a sort of a visual record of its aura, a rough outline, from the unimaginably distant past. When I first read about GN-z11 as a recent grad and young adult in 2011, I sensed some kind of uncanny and poetic analogy to my own nebulous perception of my future at the time. I felt a profound and overwhelming unknowingness about the great unknown and all its unclear yet present properties. 

Something about the existence of our awareness of GN-z11 illuminates a connection between past, present, and future. This tableau that includes a reflection of the viewer's present (a mirror), a historical way of notating of known unknowns (mare incognitum), and real futuristic imagery (GN-z11) was made with the hope of functioning as a friendly reminder of how we all exist in connection to a context that is greatly larger than ourselves.

In light of the recent rise in discussion regarding billionaires spending too little on the welfare of human life on Earth (and too much on grandiosely superfluous efforts related to space exploration during a time when the welfare of human life on earth is in dire need of help), I can’t help but agree. Nonetheless, I don’t always call all the shots, so this work was made with the intention of inspiring the kinda visionary ambition we need and to make the best of what we’ve been given. 

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