Matthew Offenbacher: Decor for Interstellar Flight
  • Matthew Offenbacher
  • Decor for Interstellar Flight, 20102
  • Acrylic, pigment, and collage on polystyrene
  • 48 x 36 inches each panel
August 2012

Decor for Interstellar Flight

  • Matthew Offenbacher
  • August 1 – September 1, 2012
  • Opening reception:
    Thursday, August 2, 6–9pm

The super-lightweight painting panels in this exhibition are informed by conditions that might exist in a spaceship during a long flight to another star: close confinement, slow passage of time, a small community, a highly artificial environment. They are intended to act as a kind of calendar. One panel is added and one removed by the astronauts each day of the voyage. Over the course of a year this simulates daily, weekly, and seasonal environmental variation. The psychological health of a crew during long-duration space travel is a non-trivial problem. When humans adapt to an extreme environment (an environment inhabitable except when mediated by technical aids) the relevance of social interactions increases considerably. This implies the desirability of a flexible habitat and the development of a system of decor which focuses on processes, rituals, and interaction rather than rigid principles: an adaptable expression of a living society, or an adaptable appropriation to a future society.

Press for Decor for Interstellar Flight:

The Conversation: Gretchen Bennett and Matthew Offenbacher.

Article by Amanda Manitach. New American Paintings, July 2012.


I Love What You've Done with Your Spaceship! Matthew Offenbacher Improves the Lives of Astronauts (and Others) at SOIL.
Article by Jen Graves. The Stranger, August 2012.