Mars on Earth
We are inundated with information about the cosmos, whether it is the appearance of water on a different planet or landing our man-made satellite on a comet. It is clear we are awed by this celestial imagery we cannot comprehend, and yet this unknown contributes to a need for exploration past our comfortable bounds. The interest of expanding the human race onto the planets around us is not a new concept, but only since the last few decades has the scientific community truly explored the idea that our neighbor planet, Mars, may be more like Earth than we ever considered.
With prototype space suits and diets consisting only of freeze-dried food, people from around the globe are dedicating weeks to months of their lives simulating the Mars environment to further the study of leaving Earth behind. To most of these pioneers, their only wish is to be a small part of the geological, biological, and psychological research that will propel us to the cosmos. Simulation sites such as NASA-funded Hawai’i Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HISEAS) and the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) create a simulated experience that blurs the line between reality and fantasy; a realm where the air is unbreathable, contact with loved ones is limited, and the dependance and cooperation of your crewmembers becomes center focus.
Cassandra Klos (b. 1991) is a Boston-based artist. Born and raised in New Hampshire, she earned her BFA in 2014 from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Her photographs have been featured in group exhibitions across the United States and in solo exhibitions at the Piano Craft Gallery in Boston, Massachusetts and the Griffin Museum of Photography in Winchester, MA (upcoming this Summer). She is the first prize recipient of the Yousuf Karsh Prize in Photography for her project, The Abductees, and a 2015 US Emerging Photographer Winner from the Magenta Foundation. She is also the artist-in-residence for the 2015-2016 season of the Mars Desert Research Station in Hanksville, Utah.
You can see more of her work at her website.