Culture: July 2008 Archives

Painter prepares for art in space, BBC

"On Tuesday morning, weather permitting, the painter will lead a team of five artists as they fly 23,000 feet into the air to create art inspired by the feeling of total weightlessness. Heavily influenced by the Norwegian artist Edvard Munch Azam's work is primarily concerned with how bodies can be represented in different states of motion and tension."

Editor's note: I certainly hope this guy paints fast - with ony 20 seconds or so of weightlessness per parabola, he'll need to be very efficient with his time. He'll also have to stow his paint and brushes in that time before they start to pull 2 Gs. Could get messy.

For Better or Worse, Sex in Space Is Inevitable, Space.com

"We don't study sexuality in space, and we don't have any studies ongoing with that," said NASA spokesman Bill Jeffs of the Johnson Space Center in Houston. "If that's your specific topic, there's nothing to discuss," he added, referring to "sex in space."

Cry havoc, The Space Review

"Did you know that NASA is a fascist organization? How about the Constellation program--did you realize that it was fascist too? Or the Apollo program? What about the philosophical/spiritual observation that Arthur C. Clarke defined as "the Overview Effect" whereby from space, Earth's political borders and squabbles disappear? Did you realize that this philosophy--perhaps even Arthur C. Clarke himself--is fascist?"

Editor's note: I can't find a thing in this article that I disagree with. The inmates are indeed trying to seize control of the asylum via the blogosphere and Dwayne Day has caught them red handed.

Editor's note: A few months ago I got an inquiry from the producers of Penn & Tell's Showtime series "Bullsh*t" asking if I would be interested in being interviewed or offer assistance on a show about NASA. I declined.

At the time, they said "We're going to basically say that NASA has been in decline since the Apollo missions, some of the current plans (moon base!) are bogus, and worst of all the culture of NASA created a safety situation that ended in the horrible deaths of the Challenger and Columbia astronauts."

The underlying intent of this show is obvious in its title. Their producer's email made it crystal clear. They are just looking for filler to edit and parse so as to illustrate their forgone conclusion. On some topics, I find myself in complete agreement with their lampooning. But given that their going-in premise with regard to NASA is negative, they are certain to find what they are looking for. Here is an innocuous preview clip.


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This page is an archive of entries in the Culture category from July 2008.

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