Help Send An Art Satellite Into Outer Space

Image courtesy Trevor Paglen.
Image courtesy Trevor Paglen.

The Nevada Museum of Art is partnering with artist Trevor Paglen to send a satellite into space. But it’s a space piece without a scientific purpose.

The Orbital Reflector “will be a public sculpture, visible from the ground without a telescope — a satellite that belongs to everyone,” according to an artist statement.

It’s anticipated to launch in early 2018 and will be sent 350 miles from Earth. But it’s only there temporarily.

The 100-foot diamond-shaped balloon will reflect sunlight to Earth for two months while in orbit.

The project is seeking funding on Kickstarter, and with only 18 days left, it still needs more than half of the money. As of this writing, the project has raised $26,000 out of a $70,000 goal. Those interested in helping can contribute on the project’s Kickstarter page.

“Orbital Reflector is a neo-minimalist sculpture, inspired by an alternative history of spaceflight that includes early Russian avant-gardists and forgotten NASA experiments,” Paglen said. “This is a work of aerospace engineering for aerospace engineering’s sake.”

The total cost of the project is $1.3 million.

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Bob Conrad is co-founder of ThisisReno. He manages ThisisReno and Conrad Communications, LLC, his marketing communications consulting company (disclosure: he has two part-time contracts working for the University of Nevada, Reno). He is a part-time faculty member at Truckee Meadows Community College and is a regular contributor to Reno Public Radio.

1 Comment

  1. What a wonderful idea. It will be fun to watch what happens and our community’s reaction to an art satellite in the sky. Good for the artist and great for the NV Museum of Art.

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