Terrestrial and celestial globes thumbnail 1
Terrestrial and celestial globes thumbnail 2
+2
images
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Request to view at the National Art Library

Terrestrial and celestial globes

Globe
1992 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This bookwork is one of Tom Phillips' 'Humument' series of works that derive from the same source, that is, W.H. Mallock's Victorian novel 'A human document' published in 1892. Phillips alters the pages of the original source by highlighting some words and painting out others, the title of the series itself deriving from a contraction of the original title minus the painted out letters.

The NAL holds numerous published versions of the 'Humument' series, including one produced by the Tetrad Press in 1970.

This variation takes the form of a pair of humument globes, which represent celestial and terrestrial worlds entirely of Phillips' imagination. He was inspired to make them when his friend, the globemaker and restorer Sylvia Sumira, made him a globe for his fiftieth birthday.

The names of the invented stars, planets, countries and islands are taken from the text of 'A Human Document'. Cut-out fragments of text have been pasted on to the surface of the globes. These have been painted over with painstaking attention to detail and minute brush strokes and depict the texture of the land, the contours of the continents and a star-filled, midnight-coloured sky.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Parts
This object consists of 2 parts.

  • Globes (Cartographic Spheres)
  • Globes (Cartographic Spheres)
Materials and Techniques
Wooden globes with paint and printed paper applied
Brief Description
Artist's book, 'Terrestrial and celestial globes', by Tom Phillips, London, 1992
Physical Description
Globes of plaster covered by paper gores, the horizon ring (with papered surface) and cradle are wooden.

The globes, rings and cradles were made by Sylvia Sumira.



Fictitious terrestrial and celestial globes. The gores are collages from colour magazines, painted and with the addition of text and names from the artist's book "A Humument".

Dimensions
  • Height: 25cm
  • Width: 24cm
Summary
This bookwork is one of Tom Phillips' 'Humument' series of works that derive from the same source, that is, W.H. Mallock's Victorian novel 'A human document' published in 1892. Phillips alters the pages of the original source by highlighting some words and painting out others, the title of the series itself deriving from a contraction of the original title minus the painted out letters.



The NAL holds numerous published versions of the 'Humument' series, including one produced by the Tetrad Press in 1970.



This variation takes the form of a pair of humument globes, which represent celestial and terrestrial worlds entirely of Phillips' imagination. He was inspired to make them when his friend, the globemaker and restorer Sylvia Sumira, made him a globe for his fiftieth birthday.



The names of the invented stars, planets, countries and islands are taken from the text of 'A Human Document'. Cut-out fragments of text have been pasted on to the surface of the globes. These have been painted over with painstaking attention to detail and minute brush strokes and depict the texture of the land, the contours of the continents and a star-filled, midnight-coloured sky.
Other Numbers
  • X920275 - NAL Pressmark
  • X920276 - NAL Pressmark
Collection
Library Number
38041992108266 and 38041992107482

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record createdMay 15, 2014
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