Eyewitness to Space

In March 1962, James Webb, Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, suggested that artists be enlisted to document the historic effort to send the first human beings to the moon. John Walker, director of the National Gallery of Art, was among those who applauded the idea, urging that artists be encouraged "…not only to record the physical appearance of the strange new world which space technology is creating, but to edit, select and probe for the inner meaning and emotional impact of events which may change the destiny of our race."

Working together, James Dean, a young artist employed by the NASA Public Affairs office, and Dr. H. Lester Cooke, curator of paintings at the National Gallery of Art, created a program that dispatched artists to NASA facilities with an invitation to paint whatever interested them. The result was an extraordinary collection of works of art proving, as one observer noted, "that America produced not only scientists and engineers capable of shaping the destiny of our age, but also artists worthy to keep them company." Transferred to the National Air and Space Museum in 1975, the NASA art collection remains one of the most important elements of what has become perhaps the world's finest collection of aerospace themed art.

Your Search Results (1 to 12 of 41)

  • Construction at Merritt Island
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Paintings
  • Housing Moved by Youngblood and Son
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronuatics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Paintings
  • Youngblood and Son-Movers
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Paintings
  • Red Cranes
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Paintings
  • Unfinished Monster
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Paintings
  • VAB Construction Behind the Trees
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Paintings
  • Cranes at MILA
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Paintings
  • Manned Space Center Complex
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Drawings
  • Complex for Saturn 7
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Drawings
  • T - Minus An Hour and a Half
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Drawings
  • T - Minus 10
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Drawings
  • T-Minus 5
    Country of Origin: United States of America
    Artist: Hugh Laidman
    Credit Line: Transferred from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
    Date: 1964
    Type: ART-Drawings