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Eytan Stibbe to Take Historic Jewish Coin, Space Art on Private Axiom Space Mission to International Space Station

By Doug Messier
Parabolic Arc
September 25, 2021
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Eli Eskosido, director of the Israel Antiquities Authority, and future astronaut Eytan Stibbe. (Credit: Yoli Schwartz/Israel Antiquities Authority)

TEL AVIV (Rakia Mission PR) — In early 2022, the Rakia Mission is scheduled to launch into space, and onboard will be Eytan Stibbe, Israel’s second man in space and the first to fly to the International Space Station (ISS).

Following our question to you which items, mementos or symbols you suggest he take with him to the space station on the Rakia Mission, the first item to enter Eytan’s personal carry-on bag has been selected!

A Jewish coin, 1900 years old, from the Bar Kochva Uprising bearing the name of Simeon Bar Kochva.

The coin, discovered in the Judean Desert, bears symbols which are the hallmarks of Second Temple-era Jewish art: a date palm on one side and a vine leaf on the other.

Ahead of lift-off, which is scheduled for February 2022, and before he departs for training, Stibbe visited the Judean Desert Scrolls Laboratories and was loaned the coin by the Director General of the Antiquities Authority, Eli Askozido.

Art to Accompany Crew

There will also be a series of new works of art in zero gravity conditions.

Art, in its various forms, will accompany the mission into outer space from the beginning of its journey and will serve as a driving force for new possibilities and for thinking about the human essence. Art created in preparation for space travel, outside the earth’s atmosphere and relative to space, generates imaginative ideas ahead of their time. Art leads the fantasy of space travel and the possibilities it holds for humanity. It is an opportunity to think about the unknown and man and pose a challenge for scientists and ourselves.

The art mission in “Rakia” strives to create new and groundbreaking forms, actions, and thoughts about the human essence and the contemporary. The art mission is being carried out in collaboration with CDA Holon and with the support of the Pais Committee for Arts and Culture.

Within it, 15 artists have been invited to develop proposals for works for the space station, the communication sphere, and the earthly viewing of the journey. The artists are accompanied by the mission’s curator, Udi Edelman, and an advisory team. In the coming months, a series of works will be formulated for the journey – at the space station, on earth, and in the media spaces, and will join the new space exploration as an essential component.

The artists were invited to engage in the following areas: nonhuman aspects – the astronomical, the molecular, and the virtual; the human body in space; the psychology of space travel; sound and communication on the space station; connections to the scientific and educational missions and their expansion.

Planned Schedule:

  • May 2021: Development of proposals by artists
  • June-August 2021: Examination of proposal and deciding on the works to be developed. technological solutions and logistics
  • September 2021: Announcement of the first collection of works
  • September-December 2021: Continued development of works, echnological solutions and logistics

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