Usually it’s hard for me to pick just one thing, but in this issue of Salt Lake magazine I have a favorite: It’s on p. 38—I love the interactive model O.A.S.I.S.C.A.F.E., a local art group, is making of the lunar module. That’s right, these folks are making a full-sized replica of the moon lander in a Salt Lake City backyard. I realize that at the stage we’re showing it, it’s not objectively the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen, but the idea is so eccentric and touches on such tropes of hope and idealism that I find it lovely.
What is it? Why, it’s an artistic model of the Lunar Module, being created for the Element 11 Art Festival, part of the Regional Burning Man Network on July 11. In celebration of the moon landing’s 50th anniversary, Artistic group O.A.S.I.S.C.A.F.E. is reinventing the Lunar Module as an interactive installation to show the marriage of art and science. We can’t possibly explain it all here, go visit the website.
In a way, it’s sheer lunacy. Yes, that means craziness because it was once believed that certain kinds of nutty behavior were linked to the phases of the moon. And that’s how I think of the O.A.S.I.S. project: touched by the moon.
Last May, NASA announced its goal of reaching the moon by 2024 as part of its larger Moon to Mars plan. That sounds like lunacy, too, but we did reach the moon 50 years ago. Human dreams and ideas are often called lunacy at their genesis—some are (think cold fusion) and some aren’t (think the Wright Brothers.) In any case, the loveliness of lunacy is in the idea, the effort to make a dream come true, the outrageousness of human imagination and the answers to our quests, large and (mostly) small.
In very small ways, that’s what we look for to include in Salt Lake magazine, especially our Best of the Beehive issue—new ideas, new efforts, new answers. What’s the best way to hike with your parrot? What’s the best way to help co-workers with health problems? Where’s the best place to pitch horseshoes? Get a gluten-free cupcake? How will we grow vegetables on Mars?
It’s not so much about providing the answer as asking the question. Curiosity is a kind of lunacy, a little bit crazy. We need more of that. Is our new gig economy good or bad? Ashley Szanter examines that question. Does recycling work? Rebecca Walsh looks into the fate of tin cans and trash. And—important to know for the summer—what does tiki mean, anyway? (See Bar Fly.)
Here’s to the crazy questions. And to the answers, when we can find them.
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