Empty Moon (for Yves Klein)

Thank you to Alan Storey and VADA for technical and financial assistance.

Empty Moon (for Yves Klein) merges two iconic photographs, Yves Klein's “Le Saut dans le Vide” (Leap into the Void) from 1960, and MIT engineer Harold Edgerton's stroboscopic image “Milk Crown” from 1938. Klein’s use of photographic darkroom illusion for a newspaper broadsheet was published as evidence of his ability to undertake unaided lunar travel and a denunciation of NASA’s own upcoming lunar expeditions as hubris and folly. What the image also made apparent was the camera’s unique ability to stop time and present a false version of “real”, or Sontag’s evidence of “presumption that something exists, or did exist”. Likewise, Edgerton’s pioneering fast-motion photography picks up where Muybridge left off to illuminate the unseeable, by capturing a literal split-second moment on film. The “Milk Crown” image was one of over one hundred photographs of a single falling droplet of milk. In both of these photographs, this stoppage of time imbues the images with anxiety; we can’t help but want to see the next moments.