Frank Malina FBI Files

My father Frank Malina came afoul of Senator Macarthy’s witch hunt committee and the FBI in the early 50s

My father had moved to Europe in 1946/47 and joined the newly founded UNESCO under Julian Huxley ( of the famous Huxley family). A full bio of Frank Malina is at )

In 1953 he was forced to resign from UNESCO following the issuance of an arrest warrant by the FBI – and he became a full time artist and pioneer in art and technology ( history is cruel) and ran the International Academy of Astronautics ( he was a major pioneer in american rocketry)
Patrick McCray  is currently researching Frank Malina as part of his work on the history of engineers working with artists over the last 60 years, (he will hold the Charles Lindbergh Chair at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum) and recently posted the arrest warrant for my father:

We have posted a number of pages from my father’s FBI files which we obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.

Some of the documents I found the most interesting/disturbing were about ‘informant No 11″ who was repeatedly interviewed by the FBI and claimed my father had tried to delay the winning of the war by ‘insisting on doing more theoretical calculations rather than shooting rockets”- of course one my father’s major contributions to the development of astronatics was the application of applied mathematics and controlled experiments ( working with his thesis advisor Theodore Von Karman).

I wrote a personal essay about Informant No 11: 

And am working with artist Moreshin Allahyari on the idea of 3D printing “informant no 11″= we have his picture in groups but dont know which colleague of my father’s was the informant;
We talk about it on a podcast on ‘dark matter”:
Other interesting reports are from a FBI agent that went to one of my fathers kinetic art exhibit vernissages in Paris in the 1950s- the poor FBI agent was convinced that my fathers kinetic art works were devices to transmit secret data !

My mother used to tell the story of walking by the car with the agent watching our front door in Paris watching the comings and goings in our home- she started buying him coffee and croissants !

The FBI had a hard time figuring out what was going on= one of my fathers best friends and colleagues was Jack Parsons ( = the two of them patented key inventions in rocket fuels- Parsons lived in a California commune in the 1930 and was a devotee of Crowley’s White Magic. Another close friend and colleague was Qian Xuesen (Tsien Hsue-shen ) ) who was expelled in 1955 against his will back to China and went on to lead the Chinese Missile program ( see Thread Of The Silkworm  by Iris Chang  for the full story)- yes history is cruel- three of the most important pioneers in american rocketry had their lives redirected..but then my father would not have become a pioneer in art and technology , not the Leonardo organisations founded 50 years ago…

Artist Ewen Chardronnet has been retracing the footsteps of my father and his friends in his project Mohave Epiphany  which result in a book and exhibitions…

Any way here are the selections from my father’s FBI files ”

Excerpts from Frank Malina’s FBI files


  1. Pingback: Now posted: Excerpts from Frank Malina’s FBI files | Roger Malina

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