1–24 MAR 2007
Ambiguity and Belief
‘It was about five in the afternoon. Emerging from the thick layer that looked like a storm coming up, we saw a luminous blue-violet mist, of a regular shape something like a cigar or a carrot. Actually, the object came out of the layer of clouds in an almost horizontal position, slightly tilted toward the ground and pointing froward, like a submerging submarine.’
Report of a UFO sighting over France in Aime Michel’s book ‘Flying Saucers and the Straight Line Mystery’ (1958)
Ever since the late 1940’s there has been an increase in UFO sightings throughout the world. The ufologists would have us believe that this was due to the start of nuclear testing in that era, electromagnetic pulses being sent out into space, warning our alien neighbours that earth was now a nuclear power. C.J.Jung, in his book, ‘Flying Saucers: A Modern Myth on Things Seen in the Skies’, 1958, felt that man was fulfilling a contemporary sociological void left by the absence of the belief in God. In a revealing recent survey over 70% of people living in the United States believed their government was not telling them the whole truth about the existence of aliens.
All the paintings in this show are taken from images posted on UFO websites. Some of them could well be people fooling around with props and lighting for their own entertainment, others might be images of natural or manmade phenomena. The fact remains that some could possibly be the real thing. Whether that is the case or not, no one can doubt the huge interest in this subject. And a lot of us are left with a profound sense of disquiet about what this is all about. In this series of paintings I have tried not to be judgemental and allowed the images to speak for themselves.
- Adam Norton