Stargazers

I had a dream, which was not all a dream.
The bright sun was extinguish’d, and the stars

Did wander darkling in the eternal space,
Rayless, and pathless, and the icy earth
Swung blind and blackening in the moonless air;
Morn came, and went – and came, a brought no day,
And men forgot their passions in the dread
Of this their desolation; and all hearts
Were chill’d into a selfish prayer for light

From “Darkness,” Lord Byron

This series of drawings entitled Stargazers is an imagining of stars, constellations and asterisms. Dooling thinks of herself as a kind of stargazer through the obsessive and compulsive artistic practice involved in the making of these “astral” drawings and through that process feels connections to the constant gaze of the astronomer or astrologer, the daydreamer, the impractical idealist. The drawings are formed by applying hundreds of false eyelashes (made from human hair) that are then teased into circular forms of varying sizes through the application of gel medium. Once attached to the paper, each eyelash is carefully brushed with mascara. In places the mascara intentionally becomes heavy and very dark, a reference to the way in which mascara smears when one cries or rubs one’s eyes in weariness and frustration.