Bert Ulrich

Headquarters, Washington, DC

(Phone: 202/358-1713)

RELEASE: 00-113

So what would it be like living on Mars? Southwest Bronx, NY
school children will have an opportunity to describe it, not with
words, but with a picture. A 7,000 square foot mural to be exact.

The NASA Art Program and the NASA Astrobiology Institute are
partially funding a mural entitled “Living on Mars”. City Arts, a
Manhattan-based art organization dedicated to transforming
neglected areas of New York City into public art spaces and New
Settlement a non-profit housing and community building
organization in the South Bronx, are coordinating the project.

The permanent outdoor mural, one of the largest in New York
City, is being painted on the walls facing the school yard of
Community Elementary School 64, 1425 Walton Ave in the southwest
Bronx under the direction of artists Nicholas A. Enright and Nils
Folke Anderson of the Big Hands artist collaborative . It began
on July 5 and will be completed by the end of the month. A
ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled for early fall to welcome
kids back to school.

Mars expert and former NASA Director of Advanced Concepts,
Dr. Lewis Peach briefed the children and teens about life on Mars.
Although NASA provided visual information to help spark the kids’
imaginations, they are mostly relying on their own creativity to
interpret space exploration past and present with a focus on Mars.

The mural is a Mars Millennium Project, an official White
House Millennium Council Youth Initiative sponsored by the White
House Millennium Council, the U.S. Department of Education, the
National Endowment for the Arts, and the J. Paul Getty Trust. The
Mars Millennium Project challenges students to work in teams to
produce a work of art or science that reflects their vision of the

The NASA Art Program has been commissioning artists since the
early 1960’s. Traditionally, American artists have received a
small honorarium to document the space program. “Living on Mars”
represents a new NASA millennium initiative of Administrator
Daniel S. Goldin, who has tasked the NASA Art Program to reach out
to diverse communities.