Press Release

New NASA Dryden Mural Captures a Century of Flight

By SpaceRef Editor
July 28, 2003
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A century of powered flight radiates from a mural six feet by
18 feet to be unveiled July 30 at the Experimental Aircraft
Association’s AirVenture 2003 in Oshkosh, Wis. Painted for NASA by
artist Robert T. McCall, the panorama, reminiscent of the heroic
murals commissioned in the 1930s to portray other facets of American
history, features a host of milestone aircraft and spacecraft
swirling around the original Wright Flyer, symbolically airborne in
front of the sun at the dawn of the age of flight.

In the foreground, fliers ranging from a happy-go-lucky
aviator of World War One to a pair of free-floating astronauts,
anonymous behind the reflective shields of their helmets, depict the
people who animate the vehicles in the painting.

NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe characterized the painting:
"Robert McCall is helping us commemorate the Centennial of Flight
with a beautiful mural slated for placement in our Dryden Flight
Research Center that documents the history of flight from the Wright
Flyer to the International Space Station. We should all take note, I
think, that in the grand scheme of things, one hundred years is a
very short period of time. In that blink of an eye we’ve gone from
Kitty Hawk to Tranquility Base and now look forward to our rovers
traversing the surface of Mars."

"Despite the challenges we face, the future we envision, like
the future depicted in the artwork of Bob McCall, is a future of
boundless possibility," O’Keefe said.

The painting, titled "Celebrating One Hundred Years of
Powered Flight, 1903-2003", is scheduled to be unveiled by the
artist, joined by Experimental Aircraft Association president Tom
Poberezny and NASA Dryden Flight Research Center director Kevin
Petersen at AirVenture on July 30 at Noon in the Countdown to
Kittyhawk Pavilion. On July 31, McCall will give a presentation
about creating the centennial of flight mural in the Vette Theater at
AirVenture from 5-6 p.m.

SpaceRef staff editor.