Tom Sachs and his team of astronauts set their sights on the next frontier of space exploration in Space Program: Europa
Targeting Jupiter’s icy moon, Europa, this expansive sculpture exhibition offered an unprecedented view into Sachs’ extraordinary artistic output and advances his quest to find extraterrestrial life with bricolaged sculptures. The exhibition filled YBCA with everything his astronauts need to successfully complete their voyage—including the Mobile Quarantine Facility, Mission Control, the Apollo-era Landing Excursion Module (LEM), and special equipment for conducting scientific experiments—immersing the audience in a universe of sculpture occupying the entire downstairs galleries in addition to YBCA’s public spaces.
Space Program: Europa featured live activations of the Europa flight plan by Sachs’ astronauts during the opening and closing weekends. In these demonstrations, the astronauts showcased the rituals and procedures of their mission, including the cultural export of chanoyu, the ancient art of the tea ceremony.
Sachs also created a new site-specific installation, Logjam Café. Logjam Café was open to the public as a neighborhood coffee shop, occasional bar, and OCD rehab center, where visitors could experience firsthand the artist’s obsession with the tools of his craft.
Tom Sachs’ Space Program: Europa exists in a universe with Tom Sachs: Tea Ceremony, presented at the Noguchi Museum from March 23 to July 24, 2016. The project continues, post-Europa, in a return to earth and Tea Ceremony, at the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, September 9, 2017 to January 7, 2018.