MEMORY CHAIN: A PAS DE DEUX OF ARTIFACT
In March 2020, through MIT Media Lab's Space Exploration Institute, I sent an artwork into low earth orbit via Space-X's Dragon vessel that launched from Cape Canaveral. Artist/Curator Xin Liu envisioned and arranged for 9 projects to be on board the Sojourner2020, an international art payload, at the International Space Station for about 30 days and then return to earth. The payload landed off the coast of Long Beach, California on April 13th via Space-X's Falcon vessel.
Memory Chain humanizes a portion of early spaceflight history. Throughout civilization, stories of origin were passed down orally, with some ultimately being transcribed. As a sculptor, I believe that artifacts are imbued with object memory, and are a part of our societal heritage. Having items that daily bore witness to the development of lunar technologies experience the particular gravity they originally planned for, brings their narrative full circle. Inside a lunar gravity pocket, I included two segments of delicate gold chain, one from my grandfather’s tie clip and the other from my grandmother’s watch- both part of their daily professional dress. My grandfather was an Aerospace Engineer, developing engine and chemical propulsions in support of lunar spacecraft missions. He met my grandmother at NASA, where they both worked and fell in love. During orbit, the chains "danced”- retelling the story of my grandparents’ work romance amidst the Space Race. The project will culminate in a video artwork using voyage footage and other collected documentation.