Open the pod bay doors please, HAL

15 March – 09 April 2017

Galerie pompom, Sydney

-Open the pod-bay doors please Hal
-Open the pod-bay doors please Hal
-Hello Hal, do you read me?
-Hello Hal, do you read me? Do you read me Hal?
-Do you read me Hal?
-Hello Hal, do you read me?
-Hello Hal, do you read me? Do you read me, Hal?
-Affirmative, Dave. I read you.
-Open the pod-bay doors, Hal.
-I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

This dialogue is transcribed from the 1968 film ‘2001: Space Odyssey’, directed by Stanley Kubrick. In this scene, the antagonistic relationship between crew member David Bowman and HAL, the ship’s computer, comes to a dangerous impasse. This is one of the most seminal moments in science fiction film. This aspect of the film deals with the complex relationship between humans, technology and artificial intelligence. In this moment, David Bowman is trapped on the wrong side of the ship’s pod bay doors, in the dangerous cold of outer space rather than in the relative safety of the ship’s interior.

By painting significant props from influential childhood science fiction films and TV, Norton has referenced a number of these special science fiction moments, when the individual narratives deal with the interface between the inside and outside of deep space. Together they turn the gallery into a ‘Loading Bay’ of science fiction’s past; the jumping off point for a generation of science fiction obsessed kids.

Exhibited works:
HAL 9000, 2016, synthetic polymer on wood, 50 x 17 cm
Airlock Release Panel (Aliens), 2016, synthetic polymer on canvas, 36 x 28 cm
Airlock Doors (Space 1999), 2016, synthetic polymer on canvas, 240 x 240 cm
Deep Space Window, 2016, synthetic polymer & enamel paint on aluminium, each 42 x 52 cm

Photos: Docqment