Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon

The Great Moon Hoax: Science and the Recreation of the Artificial merges science and art by exploring the complicated relationships between observation, representation, and understanding. This collaboration springs out of McGuire and Schoon’s individual research that address different aspects of the real, the artificial, and unattainable.

Mark Schoon is an Associate Professor of Photography at the University of West Georgia. He holds a BA in television production form Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and an MFA in Photography from Ohio University. His photographs are included in the permanent collection of The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego, CA, and the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa.

Casey McGuire is an Associate Professor of Foundations and Sculpture at the University of West Georgia. McGuire received her BFA cum laude in Studio Arts from Alfred University and her MFA in Sculpture from the University of Colorado, Boulder, in 2007. McGuire was featured in the October 2009 issue of Sculpture Magazine. Her installations contain video, found objects and constructions of roadside detritus that are conceptualization of the housing crash and the myth of the American Dream.


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Mountains, 2016, Salted Paper Prints


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Landscape with Craters, 2016, Salted Paper Prints


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Lunar Surface, 2017, Salted Paper Prints

The Great Moon Hoax

The Great Moon Hoax: Science and the Recreation of the Artificial merges science and art by exploring the complicated relationships between observation, representation, and understanding. This collaboration springs out of McGuire and Schoon’s individual research that address different aspects of the real, the artificial, and unattainable.

These images focus on early astronomical photographic attempts at rendering visible, yet unattainable objects on the moon’s surface. The quest to see these unattainable objects became a popular obsession after fantastical images depicting the moon were published with a series of articles in the New York Sun in 1835. These articles later known as “The Great Moon Hoax” along with Sir John Herschel’s photographic model: “Lunar Copernicus Crater” of 1842 and James Nasmyth’s illustrative book: “The Moon: Considered as a Planet, a World, and a Satellite” of 1847 all helped to expanded scientific curiosity beyond the limits of human vision and the possibilities of the scientific photograph. These images, despite their reliance upon drawings or models for representation, played upon the popular belief that photographs have an undeniable authenticity and are representative of the “the real”.

The images depicted in The Great Moon Hoax were realized through the creation of three-dimensional sculptures for the purposes of making photographic prints. At times referencing lunar models, Apollo era images, and telescopic astrophotography, this body of work bridges a gap between historic and modern modes of scientific representation while re-contextualizing and bringing them into a contemporary vernacular. The images of the sculptures are presented using the historic salt print process, developed by scientist William Henry Fox Talbot in 1835. The transformation of sculpture to prints provides a contextualization of photography’s ability to render convincing, useful, yet misleading scientific imagery. In their presentation, the images encourage the viewer to take a closer look at science, the imagery that represents it, and how it impacts popular understanding.


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Craters, 2017, Salted Paper Prints


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Totality, 2018, Cyanotype


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Silver and Gold, 2017, Cyanotype


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Dwarf Planet, 2017, Cyanotype


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Gas Giant, 2017, Cyanotype


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Frozen Planet, 2018, Archival Pigment Print


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Iron Oxide, 2018, Archival Pigment Print


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Iron Oxide II, 2018, Archival Pigment Print


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Red Planet, 2018, Archival Pigment Print


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Craters II, 2017, Salted Paper Prints


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Depression, 2017, Salted Paper Prints


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Rosetta Comet, 2017, Salted Paper Prints


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Saturn 5849, 2017, Silver Gelatin Prints,


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Saturn 5849, 2017, Silver Gelatin Prints,

Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Saturn 5849, 2017, Silver Gelatin Prints,


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Eclipse, 2017, Cyanotype


Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon, Fourth Planet, 2018, Archival Pigment Print

To view more of Casey McGuire & Mark Schoon’s work please visit their website.



What We've Read!

At Aint-Bad we are dedicated to photography and printed matter. From our magazines to our artist monographs, the printed page is what we live for. Each month we will gather books that catch our eyes and build an online library with the hope to inspire and support fellow bookmakers out there.

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