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Creation of an astronomical sculpture in collaboration with the Art School of Santa Cruz de La Palma

From left to right: Juan Carlos Pérez Arencibia (IAC), Anselmo Pestana (president of Cabildo Insular La Palma), Emilio Molinari (director of FGG-INAF), Marylyn Martín Pérez (artist), Borja Pérez (mayor of Breña Baja).

The project began in 2009 as a collaboration between the Art School Manolo Blahnik of Santa Cruz de La Palma and the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo, with the aim of connecting the students with the world of astronomy and especially with the Roque de Los Muchachos Observatory (La Palma, Canary Islands), site of the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo.

With this project, one of the students of the Art School had the possibility to realize an astronomical artwork.

The project started with a talk addressing the common points between the two world of Astronomy and Art, drawing attention to some properties of the Universe that may be enhanced through an artwork: matter, shape and color. After this talk, the students increased their astronomical knowledge, visiting the telescope and the annexed laboratories to see with their own eyes the tools used by the astronomers.

On the basis of this new knowledge, the students presented some sketches, among which a special committee selected the best: 'Galaxy MS33', designed by Marylyn Martín Pérez.

The sculpture, with its almost 3 meters in diameter and its 300 kg in weight, builded completely in steel and concrete, intends to be not only an artistic representation of a Galaxy with his black hole that eject matter and energy into the space, but also a representation of the union between the people living in La Palma and the 'Astrofisico', word used by people of the island for identifying the Roque de Los Muchachos Observatory.

The work of the artist and the effort of the Fundación Galileo Galilei have been finally rewarded with a final positioning of the sculpture, thanks to the Ayuntamiento of Breña Baja (town hosting the offices of the Fundación Galileo Galilei), close to the LP-5 road, joining the capital of the island, Santa Cruz de La Palma, with its airport.

The inauguration of the sculpture took place on 30th of June 2015, and is only one of the many different events organized for this year 2015, declared International Year of the Light, by UNESCO.

TNG Contact: Gloria Andreuzzi dydat@tng.iac.es

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Credits: V.Guido/FGG