Flying To Mars From New York City

The first astronauts are landing on Mars this week. . .at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City.

Installation artist Tom Sachs is running his “SPACE PROGRAM: MARS,” a four-week spaceflight involving a crew of actors and elaborate sets made from common materials bought in a hardware store. The sets cover every detail of the mission including getting into space suits, provisions of food and launching Mars rovers.

There will be several liftoffs so visitors don’t miss one of the most popular parts of any space mission.

As this preview clip shows, Tom Sachs isn’t about to put NASA out of business. I kind of like the hokeyness of the whole thing, though. It gives the exhibition a childlike feel that brings back all those fond ’80s memories of watching the Space Shuttle missions. Tom Sachs has tapped into the fact that we all got inspired by space when we were kids, and many of us still look to the stars and planets with a childlike sense of wonder.

Tom Sachs’ “SPACE PROGRAM: MARS” runs from May 16 to June 17.