Now that space shuttle Discovery has completed its last flight -- with the rest of the fleet set for retirement this year -- the New York Times reports that museums across the country are angling to add a retired shuttle to their collections:
This old vehicle — the space shuttle Discovery — is an object of fervent desire for museums around the country, which would love to add it or one of its mates, the Endeavour and the Atlantis, to their collections. (Financing terms can be arranged with NASA.)
The Times says the museums in the running include NASA’s Johnson Space Center, the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in Manhattan, the Museum of Flight in Seattle, the California Science Center in Los Angeles, the Museum of the United States Air Force, near Dayton, Ohio, and (of course) the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum.
We say: *yawn!* All aerospace museums, and all so predictable. Yet as Telstar Logistics noted before:
NASA researchers at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida have made a remarkable discovery: When you hang a well-traveled space shuttle from the ceiling of a very large building, the shuttle becomes a sophisticated piece of contemporary art. In the vein of Richard Serra perhaps? Combined with a twist of Damien Hirst?
So now we'll say it again. The museum that could perhaps make the most impressive use of a retired space shuttle is a contemporary art museum, like the MOMA in New York. Send one there!!!
PHOTOS: Shuttle Atlantis hanging inside the vehicle assembly building at Kennedy Space Center. Photos by Aviation Week.