23 April, 2020

new artwork "ascension"

“ascension” (2020)
When the Russian inventor and pioneer of astronautic theory Konstantin Tsiolkovsky first saw the Eiffel Tower in Paris in 1895, the sight of it inspired him with a strange and rather quixotic idea. The American engineer and space scientist Jerome Pearson turned this idea into a model which he presented to NASA in 1969. Arthur C. Clark, science fiction author und creator of 2001 – A Space Odyssey took up Tsiolkovsky’s futuristic vision in his 1979 novel The Fountains of Paradise, introducing it to a worldwide audience. This vision was nothing less than a space elevator – a platform circling the Earth at a height of 36,000 km and attached to the Earth's surface by a gigantic cable. An elevator capsule travels up this cable at a speed of some 200 km an hour to the platform in geostationary orbit moving at the same rotational speed as the Earth. The journey into space would start from some point in the ocean, preferably some point near the equator, from a platform swimming in the sea or mounted on an island from where a gigantic cable would reach up into the heavens. The material composition of the elevator cable itself is the most essential requirement for putting an elevator into space. It must be extremely lightweight yet strong enough to withstand the tremendous forces to which it's exposed, strong enough not to snap under its own sheer weight. Such a cable could be fabricated from carbon nanotubes which are harder than steel yet much lighter and more elastic. So far attempts have only succeeded in producing nanotubes of a few centimetres in length in the laboratory, but this could well change in future. The Obayashi Corporation in Japan recently presented a detailed technical concept and plans to build a space elevator by the year 2050.

The work “ascension” visualises the utopian vision of a space elevator. The picture's composition brings the three elements of ocean surface, island, and clouds together forming a sublime landscape bathed in dramatic light. The picture is divided in the middle by a vertical black line which also serves as a connecting element and is reminiscent of Barnett Newman‘s famous Zip Paintings. Viewers approach the picture from a distance with a wandering elevated gaze which, as they draw near, glides over the surface of the water, confronts the island from where it is catapulted straight upwards. In the background the horizon softly dissolves into clouds, the surface of the earth merges seamlessly with the sky. The horizontal breadth, the elevated gaze, and the vertically rising line conjoin the terrestrial world with space above it. The natural landscape evocative of paintings by Caspar David Friedrich has an added disruptive technological element, the taut cable of the space elevator connecting Earth with outer space. While the landscape elements were photographed by the artist from aboard a helicopter, the cable itself is a peculiarity as it is based on an electron microscope shot of a tiny fibre of a carbon nanotube produced in the laboratory and digitally reworked into a giant sky-climbing cable. In reaching the upper edge of the picture and disappearing softly into the clouds, it opens an infinite transcendental space in which the viewer's imagination can freely roam.


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12 August, 2019

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"intergalactic" exhibition at BNKR in Munich


12 April, 2019

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08 April, 2019

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12 March, 2019

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08 February, 2019

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30 October, 2018

Opening of the epic landmark exhibition „CIVILIZATION“ at Museum MCA, Seoul, South Korea


10 September, 2018

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26 June, 2018

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20 June, 2018

Exhibition at Bank/MABSociety Gallery in Shanghai


09 April, 2018

Virgin Galactic completes first rocket-powered test flight of VSS UNITY spaceship


26 February, 2018

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11 January, 2018

New book publication „Planetary Echoes - Exploring the Implications of Human Settlement in Outer Space


05 January, 2018

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20 November, 2017

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02 October, 2017

Michael took pictures of the world´s largest telescope in China


20 September, 2017

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Michael participates at the 7th Moscow Biennale 2017


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07 May, 2017

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24 April, 2017

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19 April, 2017

Alfred Ehrhardt Foundation Berlin presents Michael´s new solo exhibition "Planetary Echoes“.


22 March, 2017

UK Business Traveller Magazine features “Space Suite“ on the cover


13 February, 2017

Photo- and video shooting in Iceland


12 January, 2017

Michael portrays future Mars robot „Valkyrie“ at Edinburgh Centre for Robotics


19 November, 2016

Michael takes pictures of Arianespace VA233 milestone mission


12 October, 2016

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05 October, 2016

Exhibition at Reggio Emilia / Palazzo da Mosta


22 September, 2016

Michael visits the new SpaceShipTwo at SpaceShipCompany in the Mojave desert.


12 September, 2016

„Space Suite“ shortlisted for European Hotel Award


25 July, 2016

Michael Najjar photographs the Vulcain 2 rocket engine in France


02 June, 2016

“space garden“ at museum Marta Herford


01 April, 2016

„outer space“ exhibition opens in New York


11 March, 2016

VA229 Mission successful launched into space


20 February, 2016

Virgin Galactic unveils new spaceship 16 months after fatal crash


17 February, 2016

Michael has arrived at Guiana Space Center


13 November, 2015

Michael inaugurates solo exhibition „outer space“ at Kunstverein Oldenburg, Germany


31 October, 2015

Exo-Evolution Exhibition at ZKM Museum, Karlsruhe


13 October, 2015

Michael took pictures at :envihab - Future Research Center for Space and Earth


07 October, 2015

Michael opens the world´s first Space Suite in Zurich


24 September, 2015

Studio La Città presents Michael´s solo show "outer space“


21 September, 2015

Michael completed basic suborbital space training program at NASTAR


08 September, 2015

Michael Najjar – one of the first test persons to perform jump and vibration training on the next generation DLR centrifuge


08 July, 2015

Solo exhibition at Museo Es Baluard, Palma, Spain


08 June, 2015

WIRED MAGAZINE features a large online article by Alyssa Coppelman on Michael Najjar´s "outer space" series.


05 June, 2015

Exhibition at Galería Juan Silió, Santander, Spain


01 June, 2015

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10 May, 2015

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17 April, 2015

Article in The Wall Street Journal


15 January, 2015

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12 January, 2015

Michael Najjar exhibits at Peter Kilchmann Gallery, Zurich


12 December, 2014

Michael participates at Kochi-Muziris Biennale, India


06 November, 2014

"Michael Najjar - outer space book published - Introduction essay by Buzz Aldrin


31 October, 2014

SpaceshipTwo crashes during testflight


15 October, 2014

"outer space" presented in Parabol Art Magazine Curated issue by Peter Weibel (Director ZKM)


04 October, 2014

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30 September, 2014

HALO Jump - video documentation


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Michael´s work featured in ELEFANT Art Magazine


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First presentation of "outer space" in Berlin


24 March, 2014

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10 March, 2014

Article + interview in "uncube" magazine


31 January, 2014

Article in Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazin


20 January, 2014

Arte TV features Michael´s working at ALMA


08 January, 2014

Article in Greenpeace Magazine, Germany


25 November, 2013

Michael has done a photoshooting at the Atacama desert


20 October, 2013

Michael returns to Star City for Cosmonaut Training


08 October, 2013

Michael photographs at JPL cleanroom


04 July, 2013

Michael visits Mojave Air and Space Port


07 May, 2013

michael takes a dose of centrifugal training


07 May, 2013

michael takes a dose of centrifugal training


20 February, 2013

"spacewalk" - first video work from the series


22 January, 2013

michael najjar starts collaboration with hasselblad


16 December, 2012

michael najjar completes first phase of cosmonaut training


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michael najjar photographs "short arm centrifuge (sahc)" at the german aerospace center.


18 July, 2012

michael najjar photographs the james webb space telescope


04 April, 2012

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28 February, 2012

norman foster watches the new work


23 February, 2012

article on wallpaper magazine


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first work from the new series


05 November, 2011

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24 October, 2011

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20 September, 2011

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Imprint

Personally liable:
Michael Najjar

Design concept & coding: Matthias Hübner, possible.is
with support by Marco Land

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