Fotografisk Center, Copenhagen. Photo: David Stjernholm

A Human Computer

9 archival pigment prints, 70 x 70 cm
HD video, 5 minutes

The installation A Human Computer is based on the British astronomer Annie Maunder’s photo­graphs of sunspots and solar eclipses. In the 1890s Maunder was employed as a ‘human computer’ – a person who computes or calculates  – at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, where she worked photographing and registering solar activity.

In the photo series in the installation Maunder’s photographs are juxtaposed with present-day scien­tific images of the Sun. Via the sun images the work reflects on how the concept ‘computer’ has roots further back than we normally imagine, and how the relationship between mankind and machine has changed over time.