Supremacy

Digital, 2015

A spacecraft under construction hangs between sturdy gantries. Cables and other attachments tell us that it is nearing completion, and undergoing final fitting out. We see a similar craft speeding away in the sky, suggesting that this is the latest in a class of vessels which has proved both popular and reliable.

But our attention moves to the urban wasteland around this worksite. Seemingly abandoned facilities stretch away into the distance and a sluggish river drains through a bleak and barren landscape. Yet the buildings in the vicinity are alive with activity – this is no ghost town but a hive of industry. The builders of these craft are not concerned with the appearance of their environment – their focus is rather on the product of their labours.

Or perhaps this society has seen better days. It no longer has the resources to spend on smart new buildings, and must instead concentrate its efforts on what it continues to do best. The spaceship stands supreme against its fading surroundings. The culture that built it still takes a pride in the vessels which are the lifeblood of its civilization, and which give it supremacy among the stars.

Text: Richard Hayes