31 March 2011. Today the Kunsthalle Wien, one of the leading museums of modern art in Vienna, opened an exhibition on space and the arts to which ESPI is one of the partners.
“Space. About a dream” - this unique and comprehensive exhibition shows in an impressive manner how space inspired artists throughout the last decades. 51 artists of 18 different nationalities are exhibiting their artworks in an imposing variety of media: painting, drawing, film photography, graphic art and multimedia installation. In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin’s spaceflight part of the exhibition is dedicated to memorabilia of this pioneer.
The intention of Catherine Hug, curator of this exhibition, was to show how space can be understood as a symbol for reaching out for new horizons, in a physical but also in a metaphoric and a political dimension. Themes which are covered by the artists range from utopian perspectives of space, technological perspectives, planetary perspectives, space race, space travel and the question if there is life in outer space.
The idea of space as being not only a geographic but also a symbolic space was emphasised by Gerald Matt, Director of the Kunsthalle. Space provides space for dreams, visions and emotions. Avant-garde art, pop-art and artistic creativity expressing utopia as a way to communicate science has been the objective of the advisory board which supported the curator.
The Director of the Kunsthalle Wien Gerald Matt (left) with ESPI’s Blandina Baranes and Kai-Uwe Schrogl
The presence of five astronauts at the opening ceremony, ESPI Resident Fellow Gerhard Thiele being one of them, was an strong testimony of human spaceflight. ESPI conveys its partnership through a contribution to the catalogue of the exhibition and a lecture of its Director Kai-Uwe Schrogl at the Kunsthalle Wien, but also through several events throughout the exhibition period which are linked to this exhibition as part of its framework programme. ESPI Communications Manager Blandina Baranes has initiated and is coordinating this rewarding and enriching cooperation.
Exhibition during the opening
Cosmonaut Alexander Wolkow, ESPI’s Kai- Uwe Schrogl, and UNCOPUOS Chairman and cosmonaut Dorin Prunariu