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13 December 2011

And now for something completely different

Being in a creative field of work myself, I get excited when I see an artist tackling the theme of astronomy. During a recent visit to France, we decided to go and visit a local museum. It was that of the French artist Robert Tatin, and I use the term, museum, very loosely. It's more like a park which he dedicated to his work and used to be his home. The museum and grounds are now open to the public and the website can be seen here.

The reason I'm blogging about Robert Tatin is because he had a very big interest in astronomy and incorporated it into his work frequently. Almost as much as the female form!

Here are some examples which I was allowed to photograph:

There were many other examples of his work, depicting astronomical objects. He seemed particularly fond of constellations, most of which seemed to be ones of his own design. Sadly, I forgot to write down any of the names of his paintings so you'll just have to visit the museum yourself.

They even had his refracting telescope on display accompanied with two eyepieces:

The below plaque, according to Google translate, reads; The telescope of Robert Tatin. Day viewing, Night viewing. Which to me means he used the telescope to view the sun as well as for night time viewing.

Now, the reason many people may not know about Robert Tatin is because a large portion of his work was in the form of sculpture and permanently placed on the grounds. One of these "sculptures" is what I can only describe as a full scale Inca or Mayan temple.

Finally, I'll end up with what I think is Robert Tatins most impressive and imposing piece of work. This enormous sculpture which is quite spooky. Just to give you a sense of scale, a grown man could crawl into the mouth, but for some reason there was a statue of the virgin Mary inside it. I do remember watching a film or reading something stating that Tatin was highly skeptical about religion.

It was a great experience and although I may have taken away some of the surprise which I felt when I went to visit, I hope it's at least sparked somebodies interest in going to see Robert Tatins museum.

As a plus, there were some amazingly clear and unpolluted skies in that are of France so it would make a great astro-holiday.

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