Edgar Martins

"The Poetic Impossibility to Manage the Infinite"

The Poetic Impossibility to Manage the Infinite

The Poetic Impossibility to Manage the Infinite (2014) is the most comprehensive photographic survey ever produced about a leading scientific and space exploration organization and the result of a long-term collaboration with the European Space Agency. In 2012, Edgar Martins was granted unparalleled access to ESA and its partners’ programs, including the microgravity, human spaceflight, lunar, Mars and Mercury exploration programs. Over the past two years, he has travelled to 20 locations across the UK, The Netherlands, France, Germany, Spain, Russia, Kazakhstan and French Guyana to shoot in classified facilities such as test centres, robotics departments, space simulators, laboratories, launch sites and platforms, astronaut training centres and satellite assembly rooms.

The photographs were shot using long exposures (up to one hour) and a 10x8”, large format camera. Their clean composition and hyper-real sharpness contrast greatly with the veil of secrecy and enigma that usually shrouds space-related activity. Although rarely seen by the public, the technology and facilities in The Poetic Impossibility to Manage the Infinite look strangely familiar, underlining popular culture’s influence in shaping our understanding of space exploration.

Martins’ rigorous, study-like exposé reveals the sheer scale of this global scientific endeavour, perhaps the greatest of our time. The Poetic Impossibility to Manage the Infinite documents our quest to penetrate the astrophysical reality of the universe in order to better understand time, space, and matter. In doing so, Martins highlights the wider politics of space exploration, the ever-growing role of science and technology in our society and our relationship with the unknown, whilst opening up wider questions around epistemology, metaphysics and ultimately humanity’s conception of itself.

Edgar Martins

Edgar Martins was born in Évora in 1977, and grew up in Macau. He moved to England in 1996, where he completed his education in Fine Arts and Photography at the London Institute and at the Royal College of Art, London. His work is represented in numerous international museum and private collections. His works have been exhibited internationally in various institutions such as PS1 MoMA (New York, USA), MOPA (San Diego, USA), Laumeier Sculpture Park (St. Louis, USA), Centro Cultural de Belém (Lisbon, Portugal), Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (Lisbon/Paris), Centro Cultural Hélio Oiticica (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), the New Art Gallery Walsall (Walsall, UK), The Wolverhampton Art Gallery (Wolvehrampton, UK) the Gallery of Photography (Dublin), among others. Edgar Martins was awarded various international prizes such as the Thames & Hudson & RCA Society Book Art prize (2002), The Jerwood Photography Award (2003), the New York Photography Award (2008), the BES Photo Award (2008), amongst others. He was selected to represent Macau at the 54th Venice Biennale. Edgar Martins lives and works in England.

Monastery of Tibães

Rua do Mosteiro - Mire de Tibães

The Monastery of São Martinho de Tibães, former Motherhouse of the English Benedictine Congregation, was acquired by the Portuguese State in 1986 and assigned to the Portuguese...

More info at source

Business Hours

Terça-Feira a Domingo | Tuesday to Sunday | 10h00—19h00

Winter time: (from the 24th of October) : 10h00 - 18h00

Institutional Partners

Braga UM DGArtes GovernoPortugal