When I first started here at NASM, there was a lot of talk about the new “Art Exhibition” that would be opening at the end of July. This threw me a bit. I mean, I’m working at the National Air and Space Museum, I didn’t expect to help with the opening of an exhibition consisting of art. But I’m really glad that I was able to be here for this process because this exhibit is like nothing else currently displayed in the Museum.
Last week, the National Air and Space Museum launched three new exhibitions in the Flight in the Arts gallery: “High Art”, “Suited for Space” and “Searching for Goldilocks”. They are all really cool.
High Art is all flight or space related art (portraits, scenes and conceptual work), Suited for Space is a series of photographs and X-rays of Apollo spacesuits taken by NASM photographer Mark Avino, and Searching for Goldilocks is a really cool sculpture using 18 panels of glass to depict the location of Goldilocks planets (planets that are not too hot and not too cold and therefore may be able to sustain life) by Angela Palmer.
On Wednesday, July 24 we had a Press Preview of the exhibit, which officially opened on Friday, July 26. There’s a lot of prep involved in an event like this. It was being held in the exhibit (specifically in the High Art section) and it had to be set up and tested. Here’s the set-up early morning Wednesday before things got busy and crazy:
On Tuesday, the Office of Communications was very busy prepping for the press preview/breakfast. We had to create the media kits (both paper versions in folders and flash drive versions) and I was tasked with creating a handout with information about each artist in attendance to be given to the media at the event. And true to how things work in any fast-paced environment, we had to add something early the next morning, so they had to be reprinted and re-stapled. Because the breakfast began at 9am and the media were invited to arrive at 8:30, I arrived at 7:30 to help out before it began, and I’m glad I did because it allowed me to update the Artists in Attendance sheet in plenty of time.
The Press Preview is an opportunity for the media to visit the museum before it opens to the public and hear from some people involved in the exhibit. When the media began arriving, I assisted by directing them to the gallery because it was on the second floor and we didn’t want anyone to get lost! Once the program began, the curators of the exhibits spoke as well as Angela Palmer and we even had some of the artists in attendance. Following the formal program, the press was invited to speak with the artists, the curators and the communications team. Here’s the press event in progress:
Check out the exhibition website here, where there are some really cool photos: http://airandspace.si.edu/exhibitions/goldilocks/
All in all, it was really interesting to be involved in the planning and execution of the launch of these new exhibits, especially because it is different from what people normally expect from the National Air and Space Museum.