In what has been a rare glimmer of hope considering the climate of the world in recent months, SpaceX launched their first ever-crewed mission into space. Demo-2 sent NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to the International Space Station (ISS) in what was a historic event. In fact, the launch was NASA's most watched online event, EVER.
At the helm of SpaceX, Elon Musk has always showcased a sense of flair. This is the same guy that sent a Tesla Roadster into space on a previous unmanned mission. Given the magnitude of the event, Musk enlisted the help of revered street artist, designer, muralist, Museum of Modern Art mainstay, Tristan Eaton for a series of artistic accents to accompany the astronauts into the great beyond.
Eaton's Human Kind is a series of two-sided gold, brass, and aluminum artworks that features signature Eaton symbolism that include everything from chmpanzees and rocket ships to flowers and peace signs. Each plate includes a protective sleeve and a personalized message to the astronauts from Eaton that reads, “Welcome to space! Thank you for taking time to view these works I created for this expedition. Your courage and dedication is an inspiration to all of us down here on Earth. I imagine every astronaut takes a moment to digest the history and glory of where you are and what you are doing for humankind.”
The works will return to Earth with the Crew Dragon upon completion of the mission. Speculation is swirling about what will happen to the art when it arrives back on the ground. Eaton has a mural at SpaceX if that is any indication. He joins a rare group artists that have had their work rocketed into space including Andy Warhol, Trevor Paglen, and Robert Rauschenberg.