Planetary nebulas

27 February - 10 April 2021

Planetary nebulae are some of the most spectacular objects in space. Only for a short, on a cosmic scale, moment a cloud of cooling plasma blossoms out like a beautiful flower, twinkling in the light of a dying star


Rostan Tavasiev, artist

Planetary Nebulas is a solo exhibition by Rostan Tavasiev. The artist worked out the project of eight spectacular unearthly sculptures – planetary nebulas, the layers of thrown off stellar shell, flashing in the light of a dying star. For the first time proposed a plan for the implementation of one of the objects: dreams about art in space have never been so close to becoming real.


The artist suggests that boundaries of contemporary art should be extended – to universal limits. Thus, stars with average mass can be used as cosmic art objects during a certain stage of their evolution. Each of the eight cosmic sculpture projects is based on an existing binary star system that is likely to have a planetary nebula formed in the foreseeable future. These objects are visualized in graphic art and paintings, photo prints, as well as 3D layouts and animations. Fragile handmade models on wooden platforms remind of extracurricular astronomy classes for school children, whereas daring perspectives of nebulas twisting on the bright canvases bring to mind Soviet era illustrations for science fiction stories. Not turning back on solemnity of Russian cosmists and yet renouncing anthropocentrism that has lost its edge to a certain extent, the artist models his space sculptures with an easily recognizable image of a hare.


The exhibition will comprise planetary nebula projects for both the Northern and the Southern hemispheres. A rather feasible implementation plan for one of the projects will be presented – along with a cost sheet.


To learn more about how planetary nebulas can be impacted, please watch the conversation between Rostan Tavasiev and astrophysicist Sergey Popov from the Art in Space series.