(Group exhibition in collaboration with ESA)

Next Suburbs: 240.000 Miles Out

From January 6th till 19th 2019, a group of art students from Willem de Kooning Academy Rotterdam together with their mentors, Niek Verschoor and Ine Poppe, immersed themselves into exploring and inventing yet unknown concepts for the future suburbs on Mars and Moon. To spark their imagination and gain theoretical knowledge, they received lessons on diverse subjects varying from science to art and culture in connection to space. After an inspiring 2-day visit to the European Space Research and Technology Centre, they went on to prepare an exhibition which they later displayed in Suzanne Biederberg Gallery in Amsterdam.

The exposition consisted of six separate chapters dealing with various aspects of human conquest of Mars and Moon. One of them, titled Infantory, speculated the fictional life of first children born and raised on Mars. Anej Golčar, Hannah Sterke and Melissa Stolk investigated potential obstacles human race would have to tackle to successfully grow and develop outside of our home planet. Infantory is a design fiction displaying their proposed solutions. They simultaneously solved two problems; the potentially limited genetical pool of the first inhabitants and the limited time they would be able to devote to parenting by relieving them of the parental role altogether. In their speculative future, genetically diverse embryos are imported from Earth and artificially born and raised in a community once the first inhabitants settle down and secure a healthy environment. The concept was exhibited in the form of a model and visualisation depicting the birth module. They complemented the focal point of the exhibition with fictional pages from a diary of a child raised in such community. That way they successfully sparked a conversation about potential impacts on the psyche of an individual raised so unconventionally.