Sign the Manifesto of the Committee to Abolish Outer Space

Colleagues

My friend Morehshin Allahyari send me this intriguing link to the

Manifesto of the Committee to Abolish Outer Space

http://thenewinquiry.com/essays/manifesto-of-the-committee-to-abolish-outer-space/

 

Morehshin and I are discussing a project to represent dark matter in new ways , with 3D printing (as

a number of artists are already doing- And as a space scientist I often have reductionism/positivist tendencies

I found Mark Kris’s text through provoking- his initial section is totally true= none of the beautiful imagery

of galaxies we know and love have any relation to what space venturers would see- its all a fabrication

of the various filters and wavelengths, selected for specific scientific diagnostic purposes.
We published a good article in Leonardo Journal

Picturing the Cosmos: Hubble Space Telescope Images and the Astronomical Sublime by Elizabeth A. Kessler (review)
that goes into many of these issues

 

I am not sure whether I can follow the Kris to the end of his argument, but with his recommendations I think

he is touching a sore spot that all of us engaged in exploration of space have to acknowlege- being trapped

in the frontier mythology – space is not just further than antartic is is a world totally inhospitable to

darwinian creatures finally tuned to survive in the terrestrial environment.
Any way- enjoy:

 

http://thenewinquiry.com/essays/manifesto-of-the-committee-to-abolish-outer-space/

Manifesto of the Committee to Abolish Outer Space

 

There’s nothing there already.

We have been lied to, subjected to a cruel and chilly lie, one so vast and total it’s no longer fully perceivable but has turned into the unseen substrate of everyday life. It’s a political lie. They told us that outer space is beautiful.

 

They showed us nebulae, big pink and blue clouds draped in braids of purple stars, always resolving themselves at the pace of cosmic infinity into genital forms, cocks and cunts light years wide. They superimposed puddle-thin quotes over these pictures, so that the galaxies could speak to you in the depths of your loneliness, whispering from across a trackless infinity that you’re so much better than everyone else, because you fucking love science. The words are lies, the colors are lies, the nebulae are lies. These images are collated and pigmented by computers; they’re not a scene you could ever see out the porthole of your spaceship. Space isn’t even ugly; it isn’t anything. It’s a dead black void scattered with a few grey rocks, and they crash into each other according to a precise mathematical senselessness until all that’s left is dust.

 

http://thenewinquiry.com/essays/manifesto-of-the-committee-to-abolish-outer-space/

 

And Kris goes on to make these fantastic proposals

1 First we will abolish the moon, that smug sack of shit in the sky, our constant condescending stalker. This should be the easiest step: People have set foot on its surface, and come back, and eventually they stopped going there; they realized how utterly dull it is.

2 Next we will overthrow the fascist institution of the sun, finally achieving the dream of all great revolutionary movements in history.

3 We will disestablish the planets, one by one, leaving them to vanish with Pluto into death. We will sweep up the dusty nebulae, plug up the black holes, drink up the Milky Way, tear down the Great Wall brick by brick.

4 Comets, asteroids, space dust, quantum foam: no more.

5 Finally, when our victory is almost complete, we will abolish low earth orbit, the black depths of the oceans, the wildernesses of the poles, the pulsing core of the human psyche.
Check out Sam Kris’s Manifesto at

 

http://thenewinquiry.com/essays/manifesto-of-the-committee-to-abolish-outer-space/