Liverpool welcomes Our Place in Space solar… | Our Place In Space
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Press 13 October, 2022

Liverpool welcomes Our Place in Space solar system sculpture trail

Trail makes additional stop in the cultural hotspot this autumn with a month long programmes of events, workshops and education opportunities.

Our Place in Space has officially brought the solar system down to Earth in Liverpool this autumn for a month-long cosmic celebration.

Stretching from Church Street in the heart of the city and along and through Royal Albert Dock to the waterfront where it ends with Pluto in Otterspool, the trail features scale models of our solar system's planets and the Sun, recreated as contemporary art sculptures – an arch houses each planet with an arrow and its name as a giant illuminated sign above it.

The trail’s scale of 591 million to one makes the Sun 2.35 metres across, Earth 2.2 centimetres, and Pluto just 4 millimetres.

Our Place in Space, part of UNBOXED: Creativity, invites participants to consider how we might better share and protect our planet in future and what is the difference between ‘us’ and ‘them’? The project aims to bring our solar system down to Earth and send us soaring into the stars to find new perspectives and reconsider what it means to live life on our planet.

The trail is accompanied by the Our Place in Space augmented reality app, available on Apple and Android, which allows users across the world to take a walk through the solar system, experiencing the planets in augmented reality and considering 10,000 years of human history on Earth. Users are invited to collect space souvenirs, including characters from the world of Oliver Jeffers, as well as launching a personalised star into space.

The trail runs until 6 November with a programme of free events across the city including cosmic silent disco, guided tours through the solar system, film screenings and creative workshop in Minecraft, coding and design fabrication.

Our Place in Space has been designed by Oliver Jeffers with leading astrophysicist Professor Stephen Smartt and a creative team led by Nerve Centre, Northern Ireland’s leading creative media arts centre. Local partners helping to bring Our Place in Space to Liverpool include Culture Liverpool, Liverpool City Council, Liverpool BID Company and Canal & Riverside Trust.

Oliver Jeffers, internationally renowned artist and author said: “For centuries, we’ve defined ourselves by who we are and who we’re not. Which side we choose, on what ground we stand, who and what we fight for. A human story, that lives merely in human minds. But with distance comes perspective – and what happens to our perspective on everything when we look back at Earth from space? Our Place in Space is a playful experiment that asks: What is the difference between ‘us’ and ‘them’? Which side are we on, and if we look back at ourselves from vastness of outer space – alone on our tiny planet, the only one that can harbour life – should there be any ‘sides’ at all?”

David Lewis, Executive Producer at the Nerve Centre, said: “We are thrilled by the reaction that Our Place in Space has received during its tour of the UK in 2022 and delighted to announce Liverpool as an additional destination for the trail. Bringing the installation to the north west of England will give more people the chance to get involved, to learn about space and to experience the unique world and creativity of Oliver Jeffers.”

Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture and Visitor Economy, Councillor Harry Doyle, said: “We are delighted that UNBOXED have chosen Liverpool as the final stop for Our Place In Space this year. As the solar system takes over our city centre we are celebrating the return of our major festival River of Light, welcoming the World Gymnastic Championships 2022 and are the centre of the art world as Tate Liverpool plays host to The Turner Prize. Liverpool is the only place to be this Autumn for brilliant, free entertainment.”

Our Place in Space is commissioned by UNBOXED and Belfast City Council. Led by Nerve Centre, the project is a collaboration between Astrophysics Research Centre at Queen’s University Belfast, National Museums NI, NI Science Festival, Big Motive, Taunt, Microsoft, Jeffers & Sons, Dumbworld, Live Music Now, Little Inventors, and Urban Scale Interventions.

UNBOXED: Creativity is funded and supported by the four governments of the UK and is commissioned and delivered in partnership with Belfast City Council, Creative Wales and EventScotland.