Apollo Geology Hammer, 2004, aluminum, 18" X 7" X 2"
Apollo A7LB, 2001-4, Nylon, aluminum, silicone, urethane, acrylic, electronics, 76" X 28" X 19"
View of EVA gloves from A7LB.
PLSS (Portable Life Support System) during construction. I first made the wooden rig on the left to figure the system out- it was analogous to the handheld unit astronauts carried before entering the spacecraft. Water is pumped through the LCG (Liquid Cooling Garment) via a network of tubes (not the internet), and out to the box where it passes through a heat exchanger. The box also houses a fan to force air through the suit. Eventually the stuff in the box was transferred into the PLSS on the right.
Suit and PLSS (Portable Life Support System) during construction at old Brooklyn studio.
Child Astronaut Test Suit, 1999-2000, nylon, aluminum, silicone, steel, 7" X 19" X 17"
Suit and components during construction, around 2003.
EVA and IVA helmets with glove.
PLSS, RCU, and IVA helmet with Christmas tree. I think this was 2003.
Unfinished Study For Half Scale Apollo Space Suit, 2003, stitched fabric, rubber, metal, plastic, 34 x 12 x 4 inches (86.4 x 30.5 x 10.2 cm)
A7LB and PLSS under construction at old Brooklyn Studio, ca. 2003
Space Suits And Astronaut Equipment
In 1998 I began trying to duplicate NASA projects single handedly and with meagre means. I thought I could produce socioeconomically "miniature" versions of the missions I was aware of from museums and other suspect media outlets like computers. By using NASA artifacts as a guide, I could investigate not only historical subjects, but could also get those subjects to teach me about how to make things. I could accumulate knowledge that, while at an industrial scale was common or insignificant, nonetheless represented great personal achievement. I also made a decision at this point to make Art into a method for learning, which some might find an abomination (as I do). My first project was trying to make an Apollo Era space suit. I tried to make one half size first, thinking that smaller things are either easier or faster to make. Not even knowing how to sew, I found progress neither easy nor fast. Eventually I made a full scale rendition of the A7LB, which is the type of suit Astronauts wore on the moon during the later Apollo missions in the 1970's. This suit has several layers, and a mechanical and air conditioning system that mimics the actual artifacts, although made in my art-poverty-compromise vernacular. I machined all the fittings and fabricated all the plastic and rubber parts in my shop.
See also: Conrad Carpenter