Watching The Sun

About the project

At the start of Solar Cycle 25, we investigate and share the amazing story of solar observation tracing links between Cornwall’s early astronomers and Cornwall’s exciting role in Space Exploration. We research Cornwall’s early solar observers Somer and Lower, linking to Shwabe’s discovery of solar cycles;
specialists writes leaflets on solar observation heritage, a self-guided tour of solar-aligned ancient sites and a booklet of articles for sharing widely, printed & online. We devise and deliver a series of heritage specialist talks in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.We aim to inspire communities about solar observation through our cutting edge multimedia installation, toured to community events with other artists creating heritage-inspired work online and for exhibition and sharing widely. As part of this project we will offer hands-on ancient heritage visits to 120 young people and those with additional needs. 90 pupils produce radio programmes and pinhole/solar prints; 90 other young people use creative technology to investigate solar activity; others produce a dance response. In Redruth we bring an inspiring youth Street Art project to address graffiti vandalism of built heritage; we work to raise aspirations, change perceptions and create new advocates for local heritage.

The project so far#SeventeenSuns Social Media project. Artist Peter Beeson was commissioned to create a work which celebrated the story of 19th Century astronomer Schwabe’s amazing seventeen years of daily solar observations. Beeson chose to paint the sunrise each day from his studio, during the first phase of the Covid-19 Lockdown and shared these on social media. This became a very popular project, with over 2000 Instagram likes for the first seventeen posts. Beeson has continued painting the dawn and is now up to thirty-eight images, with over 5000 likes.

Click here to see all seventeen images

One of these images has now been turned into a postcard, which is being shared with people isolating at home, via community food delivery services, initially in Redruth.

Watching The Sun Leaflets: We are now completing heritage research and preparation of leaflets.