AN Edinburgh Festival show will be heading into space for the first time this summer as part of the UK’s biggest celebration of visual art.
Glasgow artist Katie Paterson will be sending a morse code version of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata all the way to the moon and back from the Jupiter Artland sculpture park near Edinburgh Airport.
Her installation is part of the programme for this summer’s Edinburgh Art Festival, which will also include an artist in a week-long residency in a bakery, an exploration of the links between art, theatre and magic, and the creation of a new sonic soundtrack for Calton Hill, where a new gallery is opening its doors.
More than 40 different exhibitions and shows will be staged in 30 venues as part of the month-long festival, which will include the transformation of the City Art Centre into a huge showcase of work from 20 artists from five Commonwealth countries - to coincide with the staging of the sporting extravaganza in Glasgow.
The festival, which will be celebrating its 11th birthday this summer, will also include major exhibitions of work by artist John Byrne, poet Carol Ann Duffy and art critic John Ruskin.
Paterson, who will also have a major solo exhibition at the Ingleby Gallery in the city centre during the festival, won the prestigious South Banks Sky Arts Award for visual art earlier this year.
For her project at Jupiter Artland, which boasts permanent works from some of Britain’s leading artists, she will be installing a “self-playing grand piano” where visitors will be able to hear what has become of Beethoven’s famous score after its travels. The moon is expected to reflect only part of Paterson’s morse code messages back to earth after being fragmented by the moon’s surface, resulting in an interrupted musical experience. A piece of the moon, which Paterson has arranged to be couriered around the planet, is also expected to arrive at a special event at Jupiter Artland.
In a separate project, London artist Alice Finbow will be spending a week observing the comings and goings at Manna House Bakery on Easter Road. She will be creating a work of art on a single piece of paper featuring drawings, photographs and recorded texts of overheard conversations in the cafe.
Other programme highlights include a major retrospective of Glasgow artist Jim Lambie at the Fruitmarket Gallery, a showcase of American artist Susan Hiller’s work at Summerhall and a new artistic response to the geography and architecture of Edinburgh by award-winning duo Matthew Dalziel & Louise Scullion, which will be staged at the Dovecot Studios.
Festival director Sorcha Carey said: “As the only major annual festival dedicated to the visual arts within the UK, the Edinburgh Art Festival occupies a uniquely important place in the cultural calendar.
“Our 2014 programme continues to provide audiences with an unrivalled opportunity to immerse themselves in the very best historic and contemporary art, with an extraordinarily rich series of solo and group presentations of Scottish contemporary artists alongside exhibitions of leading international artists, many showing in the UK for the very first time.”
More than 280,000 attended shows at last year’s Edinburgh Art Festival, which will run this summer from 31 July-31 August.