While the arrival of a retiring space shuttle to New York City was heralded with great fanfare, artist Tom Sachs was busy putting the finishing touches on his own version of a four-week mission to Mars. From a launch pad on Park Avenue, no less.
It may not be on another planet, but the vast space that Sachs has chosen - the 55,000-square-foot Drill Hall within the Park Avenue Armory - serves as the perfect venue to host 'Space Program: Mars'. Jointly organised by Park Avenue Armory and arts organisation Creative Time, the exhibition runs until June 17. A 13-man launch crew worked three years to realise a 30-day shuttle mission to the red planet, creating 'bricolage' versions of everything from a hot nut machine to a functioning Mars rover.
'Everything is exposed; there are no hidden imperfections,' says Sachs. 'This space program is about the interaction we have with our finite natural resources.'
And the take away? A NikeCraft gift shop with a limited edition, five-piece capsule collection developed by Sachs and Nike, built specifically with space travel in mind. Priced $385 to $700, some of the pieces in the the Tom Sachs: NikeCraft collection are constructed from actual space-suit material, while others are made from yacht mainsails and car air bags.
Products range from the Mars Yard Shoe, a sneaker with a vintage-style orange and tan upper and futuristic space-style soles, to a lightweight Marsfly jacket with 360 customized reflector markers, a Chester Trench with a silver lining featuring the periodic table of elements and the Airbag, a duffel bag featuring a paracord that can double as a tourniquet.