When Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped onto the lunar surface in July of 1969, they wore spacesuits crafted by seamstresses taken from the assembly-line of Playtex, maker of bras and girdles: This book is the story of that suit.
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Winner of the 2012 Eugene M. Emme Astronautical Literature Award from the American Astronautical Society.
Shortlisted for the 2012 Art Book Prize
Thursday, March 01, 2012 6:15 p.m, Kalil Smart Design Fellow Presentation, Parsons the New School for Design.
Podcast of January 14, 2012 West Coast Live Interview
Design Book of the year, Eugenia Bell, Frieze Magazine
Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker Culture Desk, "Five Good Books."
Maria Popova's Brain Pickings
Rosten Woo in the Los Angeles Review of Books
Friday, October 28, 1:30 PM Thrilling Wonder Stories 3, Hosted by the Architectural Association, London, and Columbia GSAPP's Studio X New York, with Popular Science Magazine. New York's friday afternoon lineup includes Nicholas de Monchaux, Bjarke Ingels, Seth Fletcher and Hari Kunzru. At Studio X / New York, 180 Varick St., 6th Floor. Read more on bldgblog.
Thursday, October 27th, 7:00 PM Reading Room Exchange at Van Alen Books, 30 W. 22nd St., New York. In conversation with Cynthia Davidson.
East Bay Mini Maker Faire, Oakland, Sunday, October 16, Presenting at 11:00 AM!
Sunday October 2nd, Signing and discussion with Syuzi Pakhchyan at the West Hollywood Book Fair, 4:00 PM in the Current Events & Hot Topics Pavillion. Signing afterwards at Mysterious Galaxy Booth.
Interview with Thomas Seely on Breakthru Radio
Interview in GE's Txchnologist Magazine
Op-Ed on spacesuits and the end of the Shuttle Program, The New York Times.
Interview on WHYY Philadelphia's
Radio Times with Marty Moss-Coane
Spacesuit Video Feature, and a nice book assesment, at The Atlantic.
Presentation on the history and future of Spacesuits in architecture, Osaka 70 to now; a part of the the Ultra Exposure Forum, Little Tokyo Design Week: Future City, Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, Saturday, July 16, 2011, 5:00-6:30 PM. With Sylvia Lavin, Elizabeth Diller, Rene Daalder, Machiko Kusahara and Hiroki Azuma.
Interview on ABC (Australia) Radio's By Design, with Alan Saunders.
Spacesuit at Columbia University's Laboratory for Architectural Broadcasting / C-LAB, Tuesday, June 14th, 7PM, Studio X 180 Varick Street # 1610, New York, NY
Book-Signing at the National Air and Space Museum, Washington, DC. Monday, June 6th, 1-3PM.
On Science Friday with Ira Flatow and John Logsdon to discuss the 50th Anniversary of John F. Kennedy's Speech Committing the country to a Moon Landing
Maker Faire Talk is on FORA.tv
For those trying to buy RIGHT NOW - thanks! And thanks for being patient. The book will reappear next week (June 6ish) thanks to a second printing.
Presentation at Maker Faire 2011, San Mateo County Event Center, Saturday May 21
© Nicholas de Monchaux
all content © MIT Press
The most delightful and memorable new book I read last year...
[a] wonderful material history...
...Spacesuit: Fashioning Apollo is now the definitive investigation of this terrain.
... thoroughly researched and a joy to read.
The density of ideas and connections is intoxicating. De Monchaux swings masterfully between subjects, teasing out unexpected connections and spotting the seeds of contemporary life that were planted by the space race.
... a broad and creative appraisal of [the] suit's many contexts, encouraging readers to consider technology as design, shaped by the circumstances of its time, unfailingly and elegantly layered and crafted to serve a purpose.
"Woven, as befits its topic, with multiple and colored threads borrowed from an astounding variety of fields and domains--technology, politics, media, and fashion design, to name only a few--this path-breaking book provides an innovative reading of the space race. Above all, it illuminates the relevance of this race for designers from yesterday and today."
Antoine Picon, G. Ware Travelstead Professor of the History of Architecture and Technology, Harvard Graduate School of Design
"A layered tour through the interwoven histories of spaceflight and its clothing, rethinking the body's technologies in the cybernetic era. The first sartorial history of spaceflight!"
David Mindell, Director, Program in Science, Technology, and Society, MIT, and author, _Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in Spaceflight_
"This surely is one of the most deeply researched books on design ever written. de Monchaux follows the history of--among other things--fashion, space travel, politics, and architecture to demonstrate an astonishing relationship between what the Apollo astronauts wore and the design of the built environment."
Ralph Caplan, author of _By Design: Why There Are No Locks on the Bathroom Doors in the Hotel Louis XIV and Other Object Lessons_, and and 2010 recipient of the Smithsonian's "Design Mind" National Design Award
"A veritable fantastic voyage! Not only along the intricate, infinite and incredible journey that it turns out links brassiere to stratosphere but deep inside the nebulous ether that allows architecture and fashion to form the miasma of contemporary life..."
Sylvia Lavin, Director of Critical Studies and MA/PhD Programs, UCLArchitecture
"Nicholas de Monchaux offers in this remarkable book a far-reaching and broad-based analysis of the spacesuit, interpreting it as far more than a functional garment protecting astronauts but also as an artifact at the nexus of society, science, and spacefaring..."
Roger Launius, Senior Curator, Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
click each layer to expand »
foreword by elizabeth diller
1. Introduction
2. Definition of Space
3. The New Look
4. the new look in defense planning
5. Flight and suits
6. Cyborg
7. Flight Suit to Space Suit
8. Man in space
9. Bras and the Battlefield
10. JFK
11. Contractual Physiology
12. Simulation
13. The Moon Suit plays football
14. Handmade
15. Hard Suit 1
16. "We've got a signal"
17. Hard Suit 2
18. Control Space
19. Cities and Cyborgs
20. 21 Layers
21. Conclusion