The Space Age


‘Knowing‘ is an interesting film about the near future and focuses on one man, his son, one girl and her progeny. It is captivating, dramatic and you invest in the outcome. {Although theat ends up being a bit naff but you feel like at least it was an enjoyable journey}.

‘2012’ has moments of amazing graphics and a star cast but is peppered with questionable dialogue and unintentional laugh out loud moments (not something that is well suited to creating the ambience for a disaster movie).

These are two recent creative apocalyptic yet hopeful visions of the future.

The touring exhibition from the V&A Museum of Childhood ‘Space Age’ at South Shields Museum and Gallery (Tyne and Wear Museums) mixes artefacts from the space age (a 1990s cosmonauts suit, a fisher space pen*,a photograph of the interior of the Kennedy Space Center by Henri Carter-Bresson) with those everyday objects inspired by the ‘the space age’ (interior designs, fabrics, electronics, film posters and toys) from around the same period or earlier.
What struck me the most was how antiquated the cosmonauts suit appeared… but then unlike the aesthetic objects this was a functional piece of equipment., unlike say the designer furniture, toys or items made for the New York World Fair in 1939.

I wonder how an artist might depict the near future? I feel thinking about our shared futures artists would either celebrate mans inventiveness (the notion we will find solutions to problems before the arise e.g. global warming, fuel shortages, food poverty) or a bleak dangerous future. Either way I recognise that the future(s) I’m interested in are personal futures and the near future.

*The pen is used by both American and Russian space programs.

I’ll update this post after the weekend with some of my sketches based on the exhibition.

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