Sunday, February 14, 2016

retrospace - visions of the future-past

How intriguing that NASA should choose a retro look - vaguely in the style of the Works Progress Administration of the 1930s - for its free posters about space tourism - trips to exotic locations in the solar system that most likely will occur centuries into the future even as manned missions, let alone as vacations for ordinary civilians. It seems to acknowledge that the Future is behind us, or has become camp...


from the NASA blurb:

Imagination is our window into the future. At NASA/JPL we strive to be bold in advancing the edge of possibility so that someday, with the help of new generations of innovators and explorers, these visions of the future can become a reality. As you look through these images of imaginative travel destinations, remember that you can be an architect of the future.


They are the work of the design studio at NASA's Jet Propulsion Labs - just up the road from here, in Pasadena.

As this piece at The Drive explains:

"The posters are a continuation of the Exoplanet Travel Bureau poster series first created by JPL’s design studio last year....   NASA’s faux travel agency is, obviously, a tad grandiose in their claims. Mankind won’t set foot on another planet for at least another decade, and even that’s optimistic.... But anything that keeps the public aware of the grandeur of space exploration is cool with us"

Keeping the idea of space exploration in the public eye - hmmm, this confirms my sense as mentioned here a few weeks ago that NASA has recently vamped up its public relations outreach dramatically and is making a strenuous effort to maintain a steady flow of news stories about breakthrough, discoveries, buzz-worthy stuff  etc - in order to stoke public support for maintaining or increasing funding to NASA... somehow reactivate the romance of outer space

Hence this poster series blatant appeal to hipster taste...  which is largely retro taste

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