A Space Odyssey: Making Art Up There

Mr. Kac’s artwork was made possible by the Space Observatory, an office of France’s National Center for Space Studies that focuses on the cultural aspect of space exploration. Beginning Friday, March 24, the observatory is hosting its annual celebration of art and space at the center’s headquarters in central Paris, just opposite Les Halles. Among the participants will be Mr. Kac, who will show a 12-minute art video of the paper cutout being assembled and floating through the space station.


Thomas Pesquet taking off from the cosmodrome in Kazakhstan in November.

Manuel Pedoussaut/ESA

“It’s a simple, powerful work, evocative of language and poetry,” Gérard Azoulay, the director of the Space Observatory, said by email in French. The contrast between the humble materials required to make it and “the ultra-technological context in which it was realized intensifies its emotional power,” he said. “And it’s only meaningful in a state of weightlessness.” Outside the Earth’s gravity, it can move freely, he added.

This is hardly the first time Mr. Kac has done something out of the ordinary. In the 1990s, after graduating from college in his native Rio de Janeiro and earning an M.F.A. at the Art Institute, he made a name for himself as a progenitor of “bio art,” meaning art made with living matter. For his 1999 work “Genesis,” he created a so-called “artist’s gene” by writing a sentence from the Book of Genesis first in the dots and dashes of Morse code and then in the four-letter alphabet of DNA, creating an artificial gene that was subsequently incorporated into bacteria. By shining short-wavelength ultraviolet light on the bacteria, viewers online were able to alter its genetic code. When that was translated back into…

Read the full article at the Original Source..

Back to Top