What do spacesuits, aerospace-themed art, and the search for planets capable of supporting life have in common? From July 26 through December 1, three mini-exhibits exploring those topics will share the Flight and the Arts gallery.
Suited for Space
Developed by Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service in cooperation with the National Air and Space Museum, this traveling exhibition features original photography, including unique, new X-ray images of the interiors of spacesuits. The exhibition features large-scale photographs of suits worn by astronauts from Project Mercury through the Skylab program, as well as suits used in testing and training, plus 10 objects from the National Air and Space Museum’s collection, including a glove, a boot, and helmets.
High Art: A Decade of Collecting
This exhibition will consist of 50 works of art acquired by the Museum from 2003 – 2013. A range of styles and media will be represented in the show, which will be divided into sections, such as “Visions of Flight” (conceptual works), “Faces of Flight” (portraits) and “Looking Back” (works related to historical events.) The works include conceptual works by photographic collage artist Fran Forman and by Dutch photographer and cloud-maker Berndnaut Smilde; portraits of astronauts Eileen Collins and John Glenn by photographer Annie Leibovitz and American watercolorist Henry Casselli; landscapes of Mars and the Moon by space artist Chesley Bonestell; and photographs of Apollo equipment by photographer Albert Watson.
Searching for Goldilocks
The mission of the Kepler Space Observatory was to search for other solar systems with planets that might fit the criteria for life – not too hot, not too cold, just right. Angela Palmer captures the spirit and the excitement of that quest in a unique sculpture. Composed of 18 sheets of glass each representing a slice of space 250 light-years thick, with engraved circles representing stars with at least one planet potentially suitable for life, the work represents the area of space surveyed by the Kepler spacecraft.