Invisible Dust

London | Wednesday 16 January
Pollution level: Moderate

Fake Moon Returns in Bristol


Simon Faithfull’s fake moon. Image courtesy of Simon Faithfull.

Artist Simon Faithfull first introduced his Fake Moon project at the 2008 Bigchill festival. An intense, diffuse ball of light slowly rose up from behind the trees to illuminate the sky, leaving spectators amazed, moved, and perplexed. Now it’s back, and orbiting around Bristol from 14 to 17 February.

Fake Moon is a spectacular piece of public art built using powerful filmmaking lights housed in 3m diameter helium balloon, and maneuvered by a pulley. Unlike natural planets and moons, Fake Moon’s movement across the sky was halting, and it wobbled slightly as it pursued its 3 hour trajectory, which mimicked the arc of the real moon and the other celestial bodies we can see from Earth. Its light was slightly weaker than the real moon’s, making its subterfuge apparent, but its presence in the sky no less impressive.

In Bristol, it will rise up from behind city hall. Simon Faithfull and the Bristol Astronomical Society will give a talk at “Moon Salon” on Friday, February 15. For more information, visit



Leave a Reply