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Nothing, Something, Everything

Photo: NASA/Roscosmos

Nothing, Something, Everything

On March 7, 2020, the nine artist groups launched an art payload Sojourner 2020 loaded with 18 artworks aboard SpaceX CRS-20 to the International Space Station in Low-Earth Orbit. It has completed approximately 12 Million miles (19.3 Million km) journey around our blue planet in 29 days and 48 minutes berthing to the ISS. The payload has returned safely to the Earth on April 7.

The projects on board Sojourner 2020 were selected through MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative’s first international artwork open call to the ISS, and the launch opportunity was provided by the initiative.

My three projects, Nothing, Something, Everything is dedicated to Sei Ono, my nephew who was born on Christmas Eve of 2019 and to all the current and future generations of children.

September 6. 2020
Masahito Ono

FOR ARS ELECTRONICA 2020

This is the story of how my three projects came into being and their journey to the outer space in spring of 2020. On this occasion, my purpose is to invite you to the behind-the-scenes of the Sojourner project. I therefore made my research materials and parts of my diary available, hoping that it would add clarity to my ideas and the process in which I engage to create a work. I hope soon all the countries will recover from the COVID-19 global pandemic and we can gather again in person to explore the exhibitions.

FORWARD

How far are we from the Moon? Instead of hearing it is 238,900 miles on average, one might soon hear the voice saying, “we will be landing on the moon shortly.” With where we are today with technology and vision, I think it is a matter of time until that becomes a reality. Soon, the mankind is going back to the Moon. This time both men and women will walk on its surface. Then we are headed to the red planet Mars. For the generations born after the Apollo program ended, I think we live in an exciting and important time of space exploration. And I firmly believe that it demands our responsibility of both intellectually and humanly examining why, what for and for whom we explore the space. I’m curious, are we going to space for humanity or for politics? We may not have an answer to this, but we should be thinking. I’m curious, do we need a passport to land on the other planet? What law or whose law would bound our everyday lives in space? Would a space company refuse to fly certain nationalities? Would there be a collection point for our fingerprints? A time-zone? A common language? A currency? Do we see rich and poor? Do we see a certain race or an ethnic group dominating more than the other? I’m curious, do men and women fall in love in space like we do on the planet Earth? Do we love each other? Do we continue to be indifferent and fight each other? Do we smile or cry? Becoming a multi-planetary species probably will not change the way we humans essentially are, at least I cannot imagine that to happen in the foreseeable future. We are not a perfect being even if there were such a thing. This is why I think it is important to participate in the space exploration and the thinking of it. Because if we do not think, someone will decide the future for us. And as for me, it is also important for the reason that I can look forward to wake up every morning with immensity to dream in.

SpaceX CRS-20

Commercial Resupply Services to the International Space Station

Launch date: 7 March 2020, 04:50:31 UTC
Berthing date: 9 March 2020, 12:18 UTC
Landing date: 7 April 2020, 18:50 UTC
Berthing: 29 days and 48 minutes
Mission: 31 days 13 hours 59 minutes

Photo: A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida at 11:50 p.m. EST on March 6, 2020. Credit: NASA/Tony Gray and Tim Terry



SOJOURNER 2020

Zero gravity, Lunar gravity, and Martian gravity

Photo: Sojourner 2020 loaded with all artists work and integrated for operation. Credit: Xin Liu, MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative

Sojourner 2020

A 1.5U size unit (100mm x 100mm x 152.4mm) designed and engineered by artist and engineer Xin Liu, features a three-layer telescoping structure, which creates three different “gravities:” Zero gravity, Lunar gravity, and Martian gravity. Each layer of the structure rotates independently. The top layer remains still in weightlessness, while the middle and bottom layers spin at different speeds to produce centripetal accelerations that mimic Lunar gravity and Martian gravity, respectively. Each layer carries six pockets that can hold projects.

Xin Liu (Space Exploration Initiative, MIT Media Lab) loading artist projects to the payload pocket and assembling the telescoping motors (No sound, 00:51). Credit: Janet Biggs
Houston Final Integration, Sojourner Payload inside RISDES (No sound, 00:47) Credit: Xin Liu, MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative
Space Exploration Initiative (MIT Media Lab) payload RISDES completing its acoustic test. Credit: Ariel Ekblaw, MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative
Artists on board Sojourner 2020

Janet Biggs (USA)
Levi Cai & Andrea Ling (USA & Canada)
Erin Genia (American Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate)
Luis Guzman (Chile)
Adriana Knouf (USA)
Kat Kohl (USA)
Xin Liu & Lucia Monge (China & Peru)
Masahito Ono (Japan)
Henry Tan (Thai)



NOTHING, SOMETHING, EVERYTHING

Paris Air, Paris Agreement, Longing and Belonging

Photo: A Sojourner 2020 pocket in Paris France. Credit: Jonas Cuénin

Nothing, Something, Everything (2020)

Ono’s project imagines the future of the Earth’s climate and our behavior on this planet. A cylinder-shaped magnet that points back to Earth’s magnetic North and South in absence of gravity, regardless of its location, is a metaphor of longing and belonging. A roll of Minox subminiature camera film containing the 2016 Paris Agreement and other climate documents reveal more about ourselves than the messages Voyager spacecraft could carry. 1cc of Paris Air, sampled at the city where the COP 21 delegates had met, invisible inside a capsule, is never to be unsealed by the people on Earth. By sending these tokens from our world to outer space, and metaphorically exposing and addressing them to future generations or potential extraterrestrials in our universe, his project aims to inspire those who inhabit this planet today.

Photos: Jonas Cuénin

The first COVID-19 cases in France were confirmed on January 24, just a day before I landed in Paris. At the time I was there, I did not understand the magnitude of what was to come.

1cc of Paris Air

Jan 26, 2020

The 2nd day in Paris. I woke up at 6am in what I think it used to be a maid room inside a building on Avenue du President Kennedy near Passy. I opened the small window facing the Seine, and had Croissant and Evian for my breakfast. I then sampled air by sticking out my arms from the window, swinging the pocket into a morning breeze, and tightly sealed the pocket.

My photographer Jonas and I met outside Restaurant Le Coq at 2pm and started taking photographs around the Eiffel Tower. Kyoko also joined. The location was perhaps a cliché, but I wanted it to be in front of the iconic and recognizable symbol of the industrial revolution.

We finished the shooting shortly after 3pm. Maya invited me to a recital, so I took Métro to Montmartre. I showed everyone the air that I sampled in the morning. They laughed and told me that Paris now has the worst air pollution due to the Transportation Strikes (=increased traffic). I like the sight of people carrying baguette in this city. Cheese is good and my friends are playing music. Had Indian curry together with everyone and came back to Passy. The Eiffel Tower I just saw had no lights on. It must be very late at night.

When curator Xin Liu and I discussed the project in late December 2019, she asked me why the air had to be from Paris. The air could have been brought from New York City where I live. But I thought it is conceptually important that I give a specific location to the sample. And I chose Paris, where The 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21) delegates had met. I chose the air to be sampled at the location that they shared.

Marcel Duchamp, Ampoule Contenant 50 c.c. d’air de Paris/Ampoule containing 50 c.c. air of Paris, The Guaranteed Surrealist Postcard Series, postcard, print, 1937. Courtesy of Harvard Art Museum

In one of the articles about Sojourner 2020 published after the CRS-20 launch, a journalist had pointed out that my Parisian Air is an homage to Marcel Duchamp’s 50cc of Paris Air (1919). It is a coincidence that the two artworks has a shared location of coming from Paris, but what artist today could escape from his influences? I saw his work at Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2013, the year I arrived to the United States and when I knew very little about Art. I remember how shocked I was to think that this artwork of his contains “everything.” It was my first and a rare encounter to a shocking masterpiece. In 2020, although the context is different, a hundred and one years after Duchamp created his work, air from Paris has reached the Low-Earth Orbit.

Photos: A Sojourner 2020 pocket on the artist hands. Credit: Jonas Cuénin

Please Submit This to NASA (2020)

When I submitted an initial drawing of the artwork to NASA, I had a description that just said, it is “empty.”

Since they came back and asked me to clarify the meaning of the emptiness, I added some written lines under the drawing. It said: “Sample 3 is intentionally kept empty. The pocket is sealed in Paris where the COP 21 delegates had met in 2015 to discuss Climate Change. The pocket contains air of Paris sampled in year 2020. No liquid.

When we are on the ground, air is something we take for granted. We struggle to know what air is or to describe air to another person. Even though I had called it “empty” myself, I know empty is not empty at the same time.

Once I received the freshly manufactured pocket from Liu in New York City in mid-January, I took some day off from work and booked a ticket to go to Paris for three days. My agenda said the following: sample the air, photoshoot, see the Boltanski show at Pompidou, visit Cathédrale Notre-Dame, attend some gallery openings and meet with friends.

January 28, 2020

I am writing this in mid air. The bread on this plane has the two dates stamped on its package: 08/22/2019 EXP 5/22/2020. I suppose this bread was produced last summer and it is good until May this year. I should assume something is wrong.

I woke up alone this morning at 4am in the same loft, tidied up the bed, had shower and walked to the bus stop near the Eiffel Tower before dawn. It was a quiet morning and very few people were walking on the street. I think Paris smells especially good in rain, but I say that to almost every city I visit. It is perhaps my thing that the sweet earthy smell in a rainy day brings me joy. The most people I know seems to not like the rain. And when I meet a girl who likes rain, I tend to fall for her. I was alone on the bus. At the airport, the young lady whom I suppose was on a training with her supervisor at the check-in desk gave me SSSS on my plane ticket and she smiled. [Getting SSSS marked on your ticket at any airport in the world means you have been randomly (so they say) selected for the additional security screening before boarding.] “That’s fine, I have no money to spend at Duty Free, I have time,” I told myself. But I also thought for a moment, how do I explain my 1cc or Paris Air if the officer asks? I think it looks a bit suspicious.

Photo: March 22, 2020 at 23:38:46 UTC, Western Europe seen from the ISS. On the bottom left is London, in the center is Belgium, Netherlands and Germany and on the right is Paris at night. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center


Paris Agreement

On 30 exposures I made on 9mm wide x 400mm long MINOX size orthopanchromatic film roll are:

1. Paris Agreement (except for the cover page that is original, visually reformatted without making any changes to the original content)

2. Adoption of the Paris Agreement (same treatment applied)

3. Depositary Notification by the United States, declaring withdrawal from the agreement effective 4 November 2020.

4. The very first photograph ever made of Earthrise. NASA PHOTO ID: AS08-13-2329 photographed on Christmas Eve of 1968 by astronaut, William Anders aboard Apollo 8.


The U.S. withdrawal from Paris Agreement is set to take effect on November 4, 2020, the day following the 2020 U.S. presidential election. The United States is responsible for 25% of global cumulative CO2 emission. European Union-28 (U.K. included) 22%, China 12.7%. Russia 6%, Japan 4% and India 3%. (1751-2017 data)

Paris Agreement was an accomplishment at least to the level that the countries were able to agree on its set goal of “keeping a global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius.” However, we should be worried by the fact that the Climate Scientists have been actively warning about climate change since at least around late 1960s and we are now in 21st century, year 2020, watching it unfold rapidly in front of our own eyes.

CO2 in the Atmosphere and annual emissions (1750-2019)

Data: NOAA ETHZ, Our World Data

Carbon Dioxide over 80,000 years

Data: NCEI

Photo: AS08-13-2329, Earthrise taken on Christmas Eve of 1968 from Apollo 8. Credit: NASA


Longing and Belonging

Despite the microgravity environment in Low Earth Orbit, a magnet is still attracted to the Earth’s strong magnetic field. A cylinder-shaped magnet that points back to Earth’s magnetic North and South in absence of gravity, regardless of its location, is a metaphor of our longing and belonging.


I found Paris in astronauts’ photographs from March 22, 2020, and cried

The following video created from the 1,661 photographs shows the path indicated on this map.

2020-03-22 23:35:00 UTC to
2020-03-22 23:48:49 UTC
Average Altitude 422.65km
Average Velocity 27589.73km/h



CLIMATE AND ME

Something about the Earth and my presence in it

I was born in 1983 in Japan. Because my father registered my birth in Tokyo, I am registered as born in Tokyo, but my birthplace was in a country side. My maternal grandparents who were both famers had lived in a small town called Shizuma (静間) in Shimane prefecture not very far from Hiroshima. Shizuma means in-between the quietness, a quiet place or a place in its gentleness, and it is what it is named after. The street lights were scattered like one is hardly visible from the other. A diesel train passed by only few times a day. A post delivery man would remember everyone’s name in town. People never locked doors. We had running water and electricity, but we burned wood to boil water to take a bath. We had a refrigerator but a small river was still the best place to chill the watermelons. It was such a place that I was born and had spent much of summer time in my childhood.

I with my grandmother and brother in Sizuma, 1983

Compared to many of my friends who had their grandparents also lived in Tokyo, I was quite proud of the fact that my family had a place like Shizuma. Although they were not wealthy, they seem to have had most of the things that they needed to live a moderate happy life. Their house was over a hundred years old. We had all the windows open in summer to allow air to breeze through the entire house and in winter, we sat together inside a futon table with charcoal burning inside. We picked vegetables from our garden and raised rice crops. In short, it was a prewar Japanese style house with a touch of few modern day items and a lifestyle that goes with it. I always disliked coming back to the big cities after my stay there in summer and winter. I felt so detached from nature.

Perhaps I took a long way to tell you what my childhood was like. And it may sound to some of you like a recollection of one’s childhood nostalgia, but what I am getting at is how far we have come from the days our lives were surrounded by and nurtured by nature. When Climate Scientists talk about climate change, they talk about: Carbon Oxide, Global Temperature, Arctic Sea Ice, Ice Sheet, Sea Level and more recently the extreme weather events attributed to climate change. And when we talk about climate change, we frequently argue how consequential the burning of fossil fuels are, and blame the companies and the governments for not taking actions, but we ourselves talk very little about our modern-day lifestyle that is a contributing factor to climate change. At large, climate change is part of a larger environmental problem, and human activities are the main contributing factor to the problem. Either directly or indirectly, knowingly or unknowingly, one way or the other, our everyday livelihood interferes with nature and its ecosystem. As a result of ecosystem collapsing in many places, we are experiencing a total environmental crisis and in it is climate change. Having said all this, I do not ask someone to go back to a lifestyle like the one my grandparents had. We live in 2020, and there must be a suitable lifestyle for the time we live in. I do not ask someone to give up a comfortable lifestyle, but ask to be moderate about consumptions. I think the time demands our responsibility to rethink our livelihood to become more environmentally friendly and sustainable, and perhaps be reconnected with nature. The young generations are changing and that is a hope, but the rest must also actively participate. I do not believe the achievement of total and universal behavioral change is possible, but I believe in diminishing the unnecessary wastefulness and the unintended human sorrow.

Carbon Dioxide Abundance (1970-2020)

Source: NOAA climate.gov

When I was drafting my ideas for Sojourner 2020 last summer, my sister-in-law was carrying a baby. Thinking about the world where he was about to join, gave me an opportunity to rethink many things about how I want to live and what I wanted to create as an artist. The projects that I placed inside Sojourner is my hope and dreams for the world in which my nephew can live in peace and happiness in a safer environment.

Sei watching CRS-20 launch live coverage in 2020


We have a continuous satellite observation data
of Arctic Sea Ice since October 1978.
This is Eastern Arctic 30 Day Sea Ice Forecast
published on the day I was born.

This is Western Arctic 30 Day Sea Ice Forecast
published on the day I was born.

This is Southern Ice Limit
published the following day.

I have been long thinking about what would be the solution to make someone feel that climate change is also his and her own problem. That is why I recently started comparing my birthday in 1983 with that in 2020 to see what 37 years has done to the planet. For those of us living today, we cannot deny the fact that our very own existence and livelihood is in someway a cause of climate change. Perhaps what one person can do to improve the situation is very little, but perhaps the result is very little because we think a person can do very little. When the nation states are trapped in the conversations of whose doing more and whose doing less, whose paying more and whose paying less, and whose benefitting and whose not benefitting, I believe it is the responsibility of each individual to do something about it and to think of the way to demand and convince your government to take a firm action.

Source: National Snow and Ice Data Center, University of Colorado Boulder
Arctic Sea Ice Extent

Arctic sea ice reaches its minimum each September. Comparing 1983 with 2019 (last available data) alone perhaps does not do scientific justice, but the trend is still evident. 7.39 million sq/km (1983) of ice coverage has declined to 4.32 million sq/km (2019). This change has happened in my life time.

Visualizations by Cindy Starr Released on March 13, 2018. Credit NASA Scientific Visualization Studio

“Next month, Arctic sea ice extent will reach its annual minimum, which is poised to be among the lowest on record. The trend is clear: Summer ice covers half the area it did in the 1980s, and because it is thinner, its volume is down 75%. With the Arctic warming nearly three times faster than the global average, most scientists grimly acknowledge the inevitability of ice-free summers, perhaps as soon as 2035. A warming atmosphere is far from the only factor speeding up the ice loss. Strengthening currents and waves are pulverizing the ice. And a study published this month suggests deep heat in the Arctic Ocean, long held at bay, has risen and is now melting the ice from below.”

Science  28 Aug 2020:
Vol. 369, Issue 6507, pp. 1043-1044
DOI: 10.1126/science.369.6507.1043


We learned about Greenhouse effect as early as 1856. An American scientist, Mrs. Eunice Newton Foote rightly predicted more than 200 years ago, the warming of the Earth as a result of increased CO2 volume in atmosphere. In other words, we have known it as a possibility for over 200 years.

The highest effect of the sun’s rays I have found to be in carbonic acid gas. One of the receivers was filled with it, the other with common air, and the result was as follows:

In Common Air.

In Shade

In Sun.

80
81
80
81

90
94
99
100

In Carbonic Acid Gas.

In Shade.

In Sun.

80
84
84
85

90
100
110
120

The receiver containing the gas became itself much heated very sensibly more so than the other—and on being removed, it was many times as long in cooling. An atmosphere of that gas would give to our earth a high temperature; and if as some suppose, at one period of its history the air had mixed with it a larger proportion than at present, an increased temperature from its own action as well as from increased weight must have necessarily resulted.”

Eunice Newton Foote’s paper “Circumstances affecting the heat of the Sun’s rays” from the American Journal of Science (1857)

I repeat.
Mrs. Foote wrote this paper in 1857.


Combined Heating Influence on Greenhouse Gases (1980-2019)

Source: NOAA climate.gov, data NOAA ESRL


IN FLIGHT

12 Million miles journey around our blue planet in 29 days 48 minutes berthing to the ISS.

Video: Sojourner Payload inside the ISS. Credit: Xin Liu, MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative
Video: Astronaut Jessica Meir and Andrew Morgan preparing the Doragon spacecraft with return payload. Source: NASA TV
Photo: Inside the Doragon spacecraft with return payload. Credit: NASA

CRS-20 MISSION

SpaceX’s 20th contracted Cargo Resupply Mission for NASA to the ISS

CARGO

Crew Supplies: 602 lbs / 273 kg
Science Investigations: 2,116 lbs / 960 kg
Spacewalk Equipment: 123 lbs / 56 kg
Vehicle Hardware: 483 lbs / 219 kg
Computer Resources: 2 lbs / 1 kg

Total Cargo: 4,358 lbs / 1,977 kg
Total Pressurized Cargo with Packaging: 3,326 lbs / 1,509 kg
Unpressurized Payloads (Bartolomeo Platform): 1,032 lbs / 468 kg

On April 7, the Dragon spacecraft re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere and splashed down in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Baja California with 3,700 lbs / 1,678 kg of return cargo.

Photo: The SpaceX Dragon approaches the space station (March 9, 2020). Credit: NASA Johnson

03.06.2020 Launch

The evening of March 6, 2020 in Cape Canaveral was a beautiful starry sky. There was 40% possibility of Liftoff Winds violating the weather constraints. Nothing was certain until the Launch Director verified go for lunch at T minus 45 seconds.

-00:38:00 SpaceX Launch Director verifies go for propellant load
-00:35:00 RP-1 (rocket grade kerosene) loading begins
-00:35:00 1st stage LOX (liquid oxygen) loading begins
-00:16:00 2nd stage LOX loading begins
-00:07:58 Dragon transitions to internal power
-00:07:00 Falcon 9 begins pre-launch engine chill
-00:01:00 Command flight computer to begin final prelaunch checks
-00:01:00 Propellant tanks pressurize for flight
-00:00:45 SpaceX Launch Director verifies go for launch
-00:00:03 Engine controller commands engine ignition sequence to start
-00:00:00 Falcon 9 liftoff

00:01:18 Max Q (moment of peak mechanical stress on the rocket)
00:02:18 1st stage main engine cutoff (MECO)
00:02:22 1st and 2nd stages separate
00:02:29 2nd stage engine starts
00:02:35 1st stage boostback burn begins
00:06:32 1st stage entry burn begins
00:08:17 1st stage landing
00:08:35 2nd stage engine cutoff (SECO)
00:09:35 Dragon separates from 2nd stage
00:12:02 Dragon’s solar arrays deploy
02:19:00 Dragon’s Guidance, Navigation and Control bay door opens

All times approximate (Source: SpaceX)

03.09.2020 Capture + Berthing to the ISS

Photo: 03.09.2020, 08:53:03 UTC, SpaceX Dragon during its rendezvous to the ISS
Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center
Video Excerpt. Source: NASA TV
Photo: 03.09.2020, The SpaceX Dragon is attached to the space station Credit: NASA Johnson Space Center
Photo: 03.09.2020, NASA astronauts and Expedition 62 Flight Engineers Andrew Morgan and Jessica Meir are pictured inside the cupola, the International Space Station’s “window to the world,” shortly after capturing the SpaceX Dragon resupply ship
Credit: NASA Johnson Space Center
Photo: 03.09.2020, Expedition 62 crew members inside the SpaceX Dragon resupply ship
Credit: NASA Johnson Space Center

04.07.2020 Release from Canadarm

Video Excerpt. Source: NASA TV

04.07.2020 Splashdown

SpaceX CRS-20 Dragon spacecraft after splashdown in the Pacific Ocean.
Photo: SpaceX

A SPACESHIP CALLED THE EARTH

Our Earth observed from the ISS during the CRS-20 mission

03.15.2020 Kansai JAPAN
My parents were here.

Photo: March 15. 2020, 11:49:06 GMT, Kansai, Japan. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

03.15.2020 Tokyo JAPAN
Many of my friends were here.

Photo: March 15. 2020, 11:50:01 GMT, Tokyo, Kanto, Japan. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

Many of my loved ones live here.

Photo: March 16. 2020, 11:03:00 GMT, Kanto, Chubu and Kansai Japan. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

Photo: March 16. 2020, 19:11:05 GMT, Kanto, Chubu and Kansai Japan. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

03.17.2020 Seoul S.KOREA
Sei was here.

Photo: March 17. 2020. 18:20:22 GMT. Seoul, South Korea. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

04.04.2020
New York was in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis.

Photo: April 4. 2020, 18:02:24 GMT, New York. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

04.04.2020 NYC
I was here.

Photo: April 4. 2020, 18:02:29 GMT, New York. Credit: The Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center

From this vantage point,
Our planet is one small spaceship floating in the universe.

“The ISS appeared in the sky for exactly 3 minutes. It was moving much faster than we thought it would be. It was larger and also brighter than we thought it would be. Your father and I, watched it from balcony tonight. I know you cannot leave from home, and we also do not leave from home here for the same reason. But we have a new shining star in the sky that we share. I will look for it in the sky again tomorrow night.”

– A message from Mother in Kobe, Japan (March 20, 2020)



Sojourner 2020 with 18 stories the 9 artists had added to it is one large piece of artwork. Inside a small unit, we carried our ideas, hopes and dreams together. It is my hope that Sojourner 2020 to be remembered as an international collaboration between the artists, engineers and scientists, both male and female from different countries, different professional backgrounds and institutions.

As of September 9. 2020, the three projects that had flown on CRS-20 are in New York City inside a black Pelican case that is labeled with a red NASA sticker that says, “CRITICAL SPACE ITEM HANDLE WITH EXTREME CARE”. As New York City moves on to the full reopening in the future, they will be transformed into an installation in collaboration with a glass artist. Once ready, my plan is to take that to a kindergarten and without any explanations, expose to the eyes of the future before exhibiting elsewhere.

In the future, if there is going to be an opportunity to talk about the project again, I will try to participate as much as I can. I understand that flying to Paris and to Florida and launching a payload into space is not innocent from contributing to the CO2 emission. In that respect, whether my project was a success or a failure I think would depend on whether I can do more good with it than the harm. This only the time can tell.

Lastly, I would like to mention my sincere gratitude and respect to Mr. On Kawara, who has a work with the same tile that I think is a true masterpiece.

I plan this website to remain active at least until July 2021. Please remain safe everyone!

September 6, 2020
Masahito Ono

Source: NASA TV

GRATITUDE

Curator
Xin Liu
MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative

Artists
Janet Biggs, Levi Cai, Andrea Ling, Erin Genia, Luis Guzman, Adriana Knouf, Kat Kohl, Xin Liu, Lucia Monge and Henry Tan

CSA
ESA
ISS National Laboratory
JAXA
MIT Media Lab Space Exploration Initiative
Nanoracs
NASA
Roscosmos
SpaceX
Everyone who was involved in SpaceX CRS-20 mission

Expedition 62 Commander
Roscosmos cosmonaut
Oleg Skripochka

Expedition 62 Flight Engineer
NASA Astronauts
Jessica Meir and Andrew R. Morgan

Families, Friends and Collaborators who helped me and supported me

Mariko Ando | Pablo Montealegre Barba | Mark Baumgartner | Stefan Barth | Mika Chen | Grace Cho | Kathy Cho | Jonas Cuénin | Sophia Diaz | Gershon Dublon | Ariel Ekblaw | Maya Enokida | Sarah Graves | Chris Hadfield | Ayako Hirogaki | Alfredo Jaar | Jee Eun Esther Jang | Kyoko Kasuya | Noriko Katayama | Jiyoung Kim | Maya Kogahara | Masako Kono | Birgitta Kumlin | Göth Kumlin | Grace Lau | Greg | Yooki Lee | Miwa Mangino | Reechal Mevada | Sueo Mizuma | Takeshi Miyakawa | Saori Moriizumi | Sachi Morimoto | Hajime Moriwaki | Hatsuyoshi Moriwaki | Kimie Moriwaki | Toshiro Nakamura | Soichi Noguchi | Tomomi Noguchi | Kawara On | Akiko Ono | Hirofumi Ono | Sei Ono | Shigehisa Ono | Yasuhito Ono | Yuka Ono | Se Yoon Park | Loure Poupard | Mineka Sugawara | Sao Tanaka | Tommy Voeten | Jeremy N. White | Ram Jung Woo | Wendy Wu | Feng Zhenting

Photo: The SpaceX Dragon is attached to the space station (March 9, 2020). Credit: NASA Johnson

Site last updated: September 8, 2020