Coral Rekindling Venus – Lynette Wallworth

Yesterday New Zealanders had an extremely rare chance to watch the planet Venus in transit across the face of the Sun on Wednesday the 6th of June.

This opportunity will not occur again for 105 years.

“From 10:15am until 4:43pm, viewers will be able to observe a black dot travelling across the bright disk of the Sun. A solar viewing device is essential to avoid damaging the eyes.

Transits of Venus across the Sun were once considered to be of the greatest importance to science, and huge efforts were expended trying to record them. In the 18th century the size of the universe was one of the great scientific mysteries.

Astronomers could measure how far away celestial objects were by ‘Astronomical Units’ (the distance of the Earth from the Sun). However they had not yet defined this distance accurately in kilometres or miles.”

The Video clip below is from art installation Coral Rekindling Venus by Lynette Wallworth as shown at TEDx Sydney on Sat 26th of May. The song is by Antony & the Johnsons.

Artists Statement

“Imagine global co-operation for a global problem. Imagine corals as the barometer of climate change. Imagine we are the pivot point. Imagine rekindling Venus.

My intent is to leave the audience with a sense of wonder for the complexity of the coral community and a deep-felt longing to see it survive.

What is apparent when you watch the film is the remarkable survival mechanisms already at play in the community of coral reefs, mechanisms that will be put to the test in the coming years. We might see ourselves as two different communities interconnected in our own survival.”

– Lynette Wallworth

Note: Aucklanders – The Stardome has a 25min version of the Coral Rekindling Venus – watching this on a curved planetarium screen and the 45 min version is much better than the tiny clip above.