Known as the Luke Jerram’s Museum of the Moon, the 23-feet wide replica of Moon has arrived at the Gateway of India in Mumbai, on Saturday for public viewing – as a part of the last phase of UK-India Year of Culture.
Luke Jerram, an artist of Britain developed a 23-feet wide replica of the moon in association with the UK Space Agency, using imagery from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera. Known as ‘Museum of the Moon’, this impeccable replica of earth’s closest astral friend is the creation of artist Luke Jerram, and will be touring India at various pop-up destinations across the country as part of the British Council’s UK-India Year of Culture. The giant moon replica is half a million times smaller than the actual size of the moon, which means, its one centimetre represents five kilometres on lunar surface.
The 23-feet wide lunar replica arrived at the Gateway of India, in Mumbai on Saturday and was unveiled for public viewing for two days – to mark 70 years of the British Council in India. Not in Mumbai? Don’t be pissed because the replica will be touring across India as part of the last phase of British Council’s UK-India Year of Culture. Filled with helium and internally lit, the giant lunar replica is a sight not to be missed – giving a closer and detailed real-life look to the surface of moon. The artwork is meant to encourage viewers to contemplate cultural similarities and differences. The installation is also a way for urban dwellers to reconnect with the moon while they are lost in the fast-pace lives of the uber-urban cities.
However, it took six months for Luke to create the replica, for which he was inspired after learning that the Bristol Channel has the second highest tides in the world. And it’s the moon that makes them occur. Luke believes that the installation of moon isn’t just a model, it is rather a metaphor because the moon acts like a cultural mirror to us. It has inspired a range of myths around the world. It has been interpreted as deity, planet, timekeeper and calendar. Different cultures have their own historical, cultural, scientific and religious relationships to the moon. Just like it has helped different cultures to connect, the replica, which has already travelled to France, Italy, US, Hong Kong and Dubai – will also help in building a connection between British and India cultures, all over again.