Walking in search of the metre | Sara Morawetz

Sara Morawetz

TEDxSydney 2019 · 24 May 2019

Over 112 days, artist Sara Morawetz walked and measured the Earth, retracing the historical journey that defined the metre as a fraction of the planet’s size. Equipped with a laser rangefinder, a GPS receiver and a collapsible target, Morawetz and her team set off on a 2,100km survey along the Paris meridian. Recounting her experiences of space, place and distance-measured, Morawetz discusses the physical and emotional task of creating one’s own metre. Sara Morawetz is an interdisciplinary artist whose work explores the processes that underpin scientific action, examining how these concepts can be leveraged through artistic inquiry. Interested in the ‘Scientific Method’ and its philosophical implications, her work is devised to test and expose the internal processes of methodological labour.

Her practice examines how concepts of observation, experimentation, method and standardisation operate as both scientific and cultural apparatus, exploring the dichotomies inherent in these dual perspectives. Her recent projects have incorporated diverse collaborations between the arts and sciences, including partnerships with scientists from NASA, MIT and NIST.

Sara’s work has been exhibited throughout Australia and internationally including exhibitions at the Museé des Arts et Métiers (Paris), the Australian Consulate-General New York (New York) and a winner of the 2017 Vida Lahey Memorial Travelling Scholar (QAGOMA Foundation).