By TAKURO OSAKA
“If I were to create art in space, it would be composed of light.” Souichi Noguchi, the Japanese astronaut, commented after the STS-114 mission to artists at a debriefing session held at Tokyo National University of Fine Arts & Music in October 2005. He stated that through his visual experience in outer space, he felt that light had an artistic
potential in space. The statement was a great inspiration for me as a creator of light art and as a professional who conducts studies on space and art, and gave me the opportunity to write this paper. (Mission Debriefing Session by Astronaut Noguchi, 2005)
In 2008, when the Japanese Experiment Module (JEM) “KIBO” will be docked to the ISS (International Space Station), the pilot mission for artistic experiments will begin. Prior to this mission, since 1996, JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) has been conducting research on the effective application of cultural-social sciences to JEM, and since 2000, has carried out experiments pursuing the theme “Potential of Art in Space”.
The artistic experiments in the space shuttle by astronauts Doi (STS-87 Mission, 1997) and Noguchi (STS-114 Mission, 2005) are from this project. The present paper will report on the artistic experiments that started in 2000 and introduce the designs of the art pilot mission to be launch in 2008, and discuss the potential of art in space.