Space

3D-printed "Laugh Star" becomes first artwork made in space

3D-printed "Laugh Star" become...
A 3D printed waveform of a human laugh, called "Laugh Star", has become the first piece of art to be made in space
A 3D printed waveform of a human laugh, called "Laugh Star", has become the first piece of art to be made in space
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Although a frivolous art project, the project highlights how 3D printers could be used to allow astronauts to make their own replacement parts in space, reducing resupply costs and time
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Although a frivolous art project, the project highlights how 3D printers could be used to allow astronauts to make their own replacement parts in space, reducing resupply costs and time
Partner company Made In Space launched a specially-designed 3D printer to the ISS last year, which was used to make the artwork
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Partner company Made In Space launched a specially-designed 3D printer to the ISS last year, which was used to make the artwork
A 3D printed waveform of a human laugh, called "Laugh Star", has become the first piece of art to be made in space
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A 3D printed waveform of a human laugh, called "Laugh Star", has become the first piece of art to be made in space
A colored version of the winning Laugh Star was printed here on Earth
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A colored version of the winning Laugh Star was printed here on Earth
View gallery - 4 images

A plastic sculpture shaped like a jagged donut now holds the title of first piece of art to be made in space. As abstract as it looks, the piece is a 3D waveform of a human laugh, captured through a project by Israeli contemporary artist, Eyal Gever. The specific laugh was selected from over 100,000 entries submitted through the #Laugh app, with the winning model beamed to a 3D printer aboard the International Space Station.

For the month of December, aspiring astronomical artists could download the #Laugh app, record their giggles and guffaws, and send in the resulting visual models, which Gever calls "Laugh Stars," to be judged by the community. Anyone could look at and listen to the submitted stars and vote for their favorites, with one lucky chortler winning the chance for their piece to be 3D printed on the ISS, and released into space.

"We live in epic times, where continuous disruption and rapid change exists against a backdrop of extremely volatile cultural shifts constantly challenging our human conscience," explains Gever. "A Laugh Star floating in space, above all our heads, is my attempt to create a contemporary metaphor for the hanging 'Sword Of Damocles,' a reminder that the beauty of human life is so fragile."

Recorded by Naughtia Jane Stanko, the winning Laugh Star is called "Pool Play," and it's a strange, gargling sound that we're not sure really represents the best of humanity's jollies. Nevertheless, Gever loved it, telling Stanko in a Skype call that it has a narrative quality to it that people can relate to.

"To me, it's the ultimate love letter to the universe," Stanko says, describing what drew her to the project. "It's the closest thing to God, in a sense. It's the ultimate message, a top secret algorithmic message to the universe."

Partner company Made In Space launched a specially-designed 3D printer to the ISS last year, which was used to make the artwork
Partner company Made In Space launched a specially-designed 3D printer to the ISS last year, which was used to make the artwork

If your eyes haven't rolled right out of their sockets yet, #Laugh is essentially a frivolous publicity stunt for a pretty important piece of technology. Made In Space, the partner company on the project, launched the specially-designed 3D printer to the ISS last year, with the aim of allowing astronauts to 3D print replacement parts as they need them. Considering the costs of blasting supplies into space, as well as the wait times involved, the process could potentially save millions of dollars and free up rockets for more important cargo.

Gever, Stanko and Made In Space CTO Jason Dunn will showcase the Laugh Star at the South By Southwest festival in Austin, Texas next month.

Source: #Laugh

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2 comments
Fast Eddie
Fellow taxpayers: NASA appears to be operating as a self-preserving bureaucracy in search of a mission. The ISS has become a center for doing very costly Science Fair projects, and this story adds to that view. ISS has confirmed the limited value of man in space. Human ravel beyond Earth orbit is unaffordable and never likely to lead to colonization and terraforming of Mars. Time to de-orbit ISS and expand robotic exploration.
attoman
More "Alternate Facts" or do Gever, Stanko and Dunn really want to pretend that the machine recorded laugh made entirely and automatically as a kind of machine sculpted voice print constitutes human art? Is the artist (presumably the source of the voice) who is intentionally UNNAMED to e recognized? No, a thousand times no, the Israeli Con Man Eyal Gever never touches the equipment, never modifies 3D printer clearly the artist is the voice made here on Earth not space. If the constitution was emailed to the ISS and printed out would it become the FIRST political document in space? Astronauts have written political words and sent them to earth and indeed they have made drawings and perhaps sculptures.
Go claim to be first somewhere else Elay Never you are not first in space for art nor are you first to suggest producing parts in space.
This article and non-event is a real disappointment and one hopes the last pure hype article we will see on New Atlas.