Sacha Jaffrey’s artwork is going to be on the moon ‘forever’

written by Nadia Lee Hewitson, CNN

In 1977, the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 spacecraft launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida. Their mission was to explore the solar system and beyond. Aboard each was a “golden record,” a copper phonograph disc containing images, nature sounds, and music to provide any intelligent life with a snapshot of life on Earth. These were the first images sent into outer space.
Now, as Voyagers travel through interstellar space, artists are exploring what they can do beyond Earth. In March, a piece by Dubai-based artist and philanthropist Sacha Jafri is set to land on the moon.

Jaffrey’s mission, “We Rise Together — By the Light of the Moon,” is to fly into space on a United Launch Alliance rocket powered by engines developed by Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin. The launch is scheduled to take place in the first week of March at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida.

The work is an engraving depicting a male and female figure surrounded by 88 hearts.

Jaffrey explains, “The original artwork was this beautiful heart motif. He says he wanted to capture the “unity of humanity through love and compassion” in his design.

“Together We Rise — By Moonlight,” by Sacha Jaffrey. Credit: Selenian

For his canvas, a gold alloy was developed over two years to withstand the extreme environment on the lunar surface while preserving the artwork. But this piece isn’t just for lovers of extraterrestrial art.

“When we land Finn’s bodywork on the moon, there’s a little beep in the control room,” Jaffrey said. On this signal, 88 NFTs will be released for resale on land.

Jaffrey plans to donate all proceeds to humanitarian organizations. “I’m hoping to raise huge sums of money for four of our world’s most important charity issues – health, education, sustainability and equality,” he said.

The mission was initiated by Spacebit, a UK-based company that develops space robotics technology and data analytics tools, and sent to the moon by Spacebit and NASA’s Commercial Payload Services (CLPS). will go UAE-based company Selenian Network, which specializes in blockchain technologies, will facilitate the launch of NFTs.

A lunar lander would place the work in a crater known as Lex Mortis (Lake of Death) where it would remain “forever.” According to Jaffrey, the mission will take five days to two weeks to reach the moon, depending on the conditions.

Art on the ISS

Jaffrey isn’t the only piece of art to emerge from Earth in recent years. In 2017, a work by Israeli artist Eyal Giver was 3D printed on the International Space Station. [ISS]. Giver crowdsourced recordings of laughter and used sound wave signatures to create his sculpture.

In April last year, another Israeli artist Liat Segal and Tel Aviv University physicist Yasmin Miroz created a piece of art that could only exist in space.

Harnessing the lack of gravity in space, “Impossible Object” is a tiered structure of gold-colored metal tubes that release water. On Earth the water would fall to the ground but in space it created elements floating around the statue.

It was activated when the ISS was orbiting about 400 km above Earth. Meroz and Siegel predicted that water could wrap around the structure, forming a liquid shell, but in practice it behaved quite differently, forming floating orbits.

“Impossible Objects,” by Liat Segal and Yasmin Miroz. Credit: Eytan Stibbe and Rakia Art Mission (Ramon Foundation)

“We didn’t know what the dynamics of water would be in microgravity — what does a piece of water look like?” Segal said. “We are used to filling our hands with water, filling vessels. In this case, the water is not held by a vessel. It is only held by this structure.”

As artists get creative in the space, Segal anticipates innovation.

“Many technologies were developed as a result of the space race, to accommodate a new physical reality,” Siegel added. “Now art and culture can enter this new physical reality. It will force the creation of things that we cannot expect, that could not happen otherwise.”

Jaffrey is also excited about the creative possibilities and believes that private space missions will open up new opportunities for artists. “I think people are tapping into people’s obsession with the place,” he said. “It’s a new market for the art world.”

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