Nicole Stott Artist, Astronaut, Aquanaut, Mom
I have been blessed with the opportunity to experience the beauty of our planet from the depths of our oceans to the heights of outer space. I have marveled at the particular perspective that each of these vantage points provide. The immersion of the sea and the separation of space, strangely left me feeling even more connected to my home planet and the people I share it with. I was also left with a sense of our significance. From just the standpoint of size it might be easy to use the word insignificant with respect to our place in this immense universe, but the immersion and separation of sea and space that I have experienced left me in awe and humbled by the perfect positioning of our planet with respect to the Sun and its ability to provide us with all we need to survive --- if that's not significant, I don't know what is.
The Sky, the Only One Sky we have, is the fragile interface between sea and space. The Sky is like our planet's space suit --- it is the blanket of protection that wraps around all of us and contains our entire life support system. As Earthlings this is at the core of what we all have in common. As an artist I am working to share my spaceflight and underwater experiences in a unique and meaningful way through my artwork. I believe that sharing these perspectives has the power to help us all acknowledge and act upon the shared responsibility we all have as Earthlings to care for each other and our planet. As a mother, for the sake of the future of our children, I count on all of us doing our part to protect our Sky and the precious resources it holds in place for our survival.
Daniel Horton Northwestern University Climate Scientist
My appreciation for the wild blue yonder began at a young age. Learning to sail, to navigate the wind and the sea, became a passion of mine as well as a source of comfort to me in difficult times. I reveled in the freedom the wind provided, the ingenuity of conveyance, and the relative silence of sailing. Today, as a former meteorologist and researching climate scientist I’ve developed a much more nuanced and clinical appreciation for the sky, along with a desire to better understand how it works and how it responds to human influences. This medium of life’s experiences – The Sky – deserves our communal appreciation, objective inquiry, and collective protection.