Blue Origin New Shepard NS-17 Has Random People’s Faces on It, Going Up on August 25

Whereas up until now flights to Earth’s orbit were seen by us, the general public, as some type of serious business reserved only to a select, lucky and very well trained few, get ready to have the world turned upside down: now that private space operators are here, there’s no limit to what can be sent up there.
Amoako Boafo and one of his New Shepard paintings 11 photos
Blue Origin's crew is riding in a Rivian electric truck to the launch siteBlue Origin's crew is riding in a Rivian electric truck to the launch siteNew Shepard rocket is getting ready for take offNew Shepard rocket is headed to the edge of spaceNew Shepard rocket is headed to the edge of spaceThe rocket booster has landed back at Blue Origin's Launch Site One in West TexasJeff Bezos, his brother Mark, aviation legend Wally Funk and Oliver Daemen are in the capsule after a safe touchdownJeff Bezos, his brother Mark, aviation legend Wally FunkAviation legend Wally FunkNew Shepard rocket is headed to the edge of space
With a little bit of money set aside for insane stunts such as these, people now have the opportunity of reaching the edge of space either in person, or by sending all sorts of weird stuff up there.

Back at the end of July, a group called Uplift Aerospace announced the birth of the Uplift Art Program, planning to use whatever means necessary to send art into space, because why not.

The first flight of a work of art that is part of the program will take place on August 25, when the New Shepard NS-17 mission takes off from West Texas. That work of art is called Suborbital Tryptych, and is signed by Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo.

Technically, we’re not talking about a single work of art, but three, painted portraits of the artist himself, his mother, and a friend’s mother. But these random faces are not painted on some canvas and fitted inside the New Shepard, but are proudly displayed on the on the top of the crew capsule, on the main chute covers.

Despite Uplift saying its idea “marks a new phase of space exploration with artistry as the engine of discovery,“ we kind of look forward with a lot more anticipation to the experiments NS-17 will be carrying.

The ship has on board a NASA lunar landing technology demonstration mounted on the exterior of the booster, and an extra 18 commercial payloads inside the crew capsule.

As for the vehicle that will be used for the mission, it will at its eighth flight into space, proving once more that reusable rockets and capsules are here to stay.

Editor's note: Gallery shows images from the first Blue Origin crewed flight.

press release

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