What is it

Space Messengers is a mixed reality installation and youth workshop that is part of the BioSTEAM International youth exchange program in partnership with the U.S Embassy of Portugal and the U.S. Consulate General of Guadalajara.  This virtual collaboration connects middle/high school classrooms in New Mexico, USA with classrooms in Lisbon, Portugal and Guadalajara, Mexico (more countries to be added) through a shared sci-art installation that will tour around the world.

How it Works

This site is designed for teachers to explore with their students. The icon menu above contains all the resources needed to participate in the project: Teacher Tools, Design Tool, Artist Page, Citizen Science and Speakers.

The Design Tool is the Get Started guide that takes you through the stages of the design process to complete the project;

Connect. Register your school so we can partner you with a school in another country.

Explore. Students explore the work of the artists that created the Space Messengers and all the features of the installation.

Research. Students watch the recorded video presentations to learn the science that informs the art.

Create. Students learn to use the design tools to contribute to the Space Messengers installation.

Radiate.  The student contributions are integrated into the code that gets projected for the final event. Students participate by attending the final projection event either in person or virtually on their devices for the live stream.

What we Learn

In this project we learn about the universe and our relationship to earth and space from science experts in the fields of particle physics, astrophysics and space science.  We also hear from artists, indigenous cultural specialists and philosophers of science to explore how art, humanities and philosophy can be a tool to understand the impact of science and technology on our environment and our society. Through this experience we become more informed global citizens and caretakers of the interplanetary universe that is our home.

Science and Art Merge

For the culminating projection installation, we capture video silhouettes of student movements filled with space/earth animations created with the artist-created Tagtool iPad app. In the workshop, messages co-written by students via the Space Messengers platform are fed into the projection through a real time data visualization tool. Our youth leaders use messaging to share with the world the science they learned and their thoughts and wishes for a sustainable interplanetary future.

The Festivals

Space Messengers will be inaugurated at the Festival Internacional de Ciencia e Arte in Lisbon on October 11-17, 2021 in conjunction with a livestream projection as a satellite event for The PASEO Festival in Taos, New Mexico. It will then travel to festivals around the world. Messages can be seen projected live and also scrolling on the Space Messengers website in real time for each event. Students as well as the audience in participating countries can experience and interact with this installation either in person or virtually via the Space Messengers website.

About the Team

Lead Artists: Agnes Chavez and Markus Dorninger/OMAi team, Roy MacDonald, OpenFrameworks programmer. Interdisciplinary speakers/facilitators: Dr. Steven Goldfarb, CERN physicist; Dr. Nicole Lloyd-Ronning, LANL astrophysicist; Steve Tamayo, Lakota Cultural Specialist; Catarina Pombo Nabais, Philosophy of Science/University of Lisbon; Frank Tavares, NASA Communication Specialist; Ali Guarnero-Lunas, NASA Aeronautics Engineer Curriculum  Advisors: Shane Wood, Quarknet staff; Dr. Greg Cajete, Native-American Author/cultural specialist. Visual Program Designer: Estacia Huddleston. Multi-media/Tech development and support: OMAi/Tagtool team/Josef Dorninger and Matthias Fritz;  Enrico Trujillo, University of New Mexico STEAM Ambassadors: Dania Loya, New Mexico; Bianca Emidio, Brazil; Amina Abdrazakova, Canada; Amelia Martinez and Elsie Clayton, New Mexico.