Fellows class

TED2010

About Sarah Jane

Bio

I am passionate about taking steps to qualify creative practitioners for space. Where ever I go, I champion “every space project needs an artist” and find ways to suit up, and work in space analogue environments, to connect the arc of technology transfer and imagination that is required to further human exploration from sea, to summit to space. Having recently returned from Mt. Everest and surviving the Nepal earthquakes, I have recommitted to my purpose, passion and promise. In Oct 2015, I am honoured to join the PoSSUM Scientist-Astronaut Class 1503 suborbital flight training for the campaign to conduct the NASA Space Technology Mission Directorate’s Flight experiment 46-S Noctilucent Cloud Tomography Experiment. This represents another significant opportunity for contributing new understanding and inspiring imagination through the prism of spectacular imagery and human experience. It is also a chance to consider the risks and rewards of novel modus operandi, and to empower and leverage our global mission through new access to space, and pioneer thinking.

My artist-researcher journey began in 2002 when I became a fully qualified commercial diver and founded the Aquabatics Research Team to explore commercial diving and creative practices together in a unique union. Originally focused on making underwater performances, my creative work now spans aqueous live art, digital media, installation, prototype pneumatic technologies, philosophies and experiments with advanced life support and living systems. I often collaborate with artists, scientists and architects to create a new experimental space to invent, design and explore imagined futures with the intent to re-engage with the fundamental creativity of humans working at the extremes. A question that keeps reoccurring in my work is: If I were to imagine the architecture of the future to be adaptive to the bio rhythms of the human species, how would we account for the specific bio rhythms of people living and working together underwater and in extreme environments on Earth as an analogue to outer space? Furthermore, what countermeasures or embraceable panaceas would be appropriate for quality of life?

Languages

English

Education

  • Singularity University; Space & Futures Technologies, 2010 - 2010
  • International Space University; Life & Space Science, 2006 - 2006
  • Edith Cowan University; Visual Arts, 2001 - 2005
  • Nottingham Trent University; Live Art, 2004 - 2012
  • Victoria University of Technology; Human Performance, 1996 - 1997
  • Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne; Fine Art - Drawing, 1993 - 1995
  • Emery-Riddle University; PoSSUM Scientist-Astronaut Program, 2015 - 2015

Job Titles

Scientist-Astronaut, Artist, Aquanaut, Researcher, Explorer, Performer, Consultant, Designer and Director.

About Sarah Jane Pell’s work

Dr. Sarah Jane Pell is designing and performing extreme art adventures. She believes 'every space project needs an artist' and trains for working in extreme environments so that she can take her practice into the field and communicate live to an audience to share the human experience of discovery. Her most ambitious project yet, Bending Horizons 2015-2017 leverages a Mount Everest Expedition, an Undersea Habitat Mission, and a Zero Gravity Flight Campaign. She challenges herself in these domains for the purposes of art-making to frame an analytical phenomenology of bodily experience during extreme performance. Mission: Inspire an interdisciplinary view of human exploration from sea, to summit, to space. Aims: Create site-specific artistic responses on route to the Everest summit, logging data and recording the explorers-view of the expedition with a 360degree HD camera. Unique Contributions: 1. Novel systems for communication and media during human exploration. 2. Insights into the human experience during extreme performance at altitude. 3. Live media and post-production hybrid interactive documentary, exhibition and eBook. Everest Route: Following the Sagarmāthā South Col Route as taken by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay through the Khumbu Icefall and Western Cwm, up the Lhotse Face and past the South Col and Hillary Step to the summit of Mount Everest and return. Climbing Team: Dr. Sarah Jane Pell is supported by fellow TED Fellow five-time Everest summiteer Satyabarata Dam in a private expedition with Sherpa Nim Dorjee and Sherpa Mingma to the summit. Significance: 1st 360degree HD documentary based on an artists-eye view to the summit 2nd Artist to Summit Mt. Everest & contribute new art from the heights 7th Australian Woman to Summit Mt. Everest Timeline: Arriving in Kathmandu by 2 April 2015, summit and return safety by 3 June 2015.

Companies and organizations

Icarus Interstellar, European Space Agency Topical Team Arts & Science, RMIT University, Maritime Union of Australia, Bending Horizons, Aquabatics Research Team initiative,

Fellows I'm collaborating with

Lucy Mcrae, Ben Burke, Saeed Taji Farouky, Rachel Armstrong

Flickr

Projects

Bending Horizons: extreme art adventures

Jan. 01, 2015 - Present

Dr. Sarah Jane Pell is designing and performing extreme art adventures. She believes 'every space project needs an artist' and trains for working in extreme environments so that she can take her practice into the field and communicate live to an audience to share the human experience of discovery. Her most ambitious project yet, Bending Horizons 2015-2017 leverages a Mount Everest Expedition, an Undersea Habitat Mission, and a Zero Gravity Flight Campaign. She challenges herself in these domains for the purposes of art-making to frame an analytical phenomenology of bodily experience during extreme performance. Mission: Inspire an interdisciplinary view of human exploration from sea, to summit, to space. Aims: Create site-specific artistic responses on route to the Everest summit, logging data and recording the explorers-view of the expedition with a 360degree HD camera. Unique Contributions: 1. Novel systems for communication and media during human exploration. 2. Insights into the human experience during extreme performance at altitude. 3. Live media and post-production hybrid interactive documentary, exhibition and eBook. Everest Route: Following the Sagarmāthā South Col Route as taken by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay through the Khumbu Icefall and Western Cwm, up the Lhotse Face and past the South Col and Hillary Step to the summit of Mount Everest and return. Climbing Team: Dr. Sarah Jane Pell is supported by fellow TED Fellow five-time Everest summiteer Satyabarata Dam in a private expedition with Sherpa Nim Dorjee and Sherpa Mingma to the summit. Significance: 1st 360degree HD documentary based on an artists-eye view to the summit 2nd Artist to Summit Mt. Everest & contribute new art from the heights 7th Australian Woman to Summit Mt. Everest Timeline: Arriving in Kathmandu by 2 April 2015, summit and return safety by 3 June 2015.

Project website

Ocean Synapse: trans-hemisphere performance

Jan. 09, 2013 - Jan. 09, 2014

"By 2040, all systems collide: information transfers through liquids – oceans and gases – as a ubiquitous mainframe supporting all life and intelligence. We see our planet like a brain with two hemispheres supporting one body. The ocean becomes the medium supporting the synapse pathway of multiple concurrent bodies in drift. The artists exchange a flurry of white paper vessels, representing the day to day deluge of information exchanged between people and neurons alike, until they each decide to share something deeper, more personal and sacred, represented by red paper vessels which they extract from their pockets and mouths and send across the ocean, as they disappear from one screen and appear on the other, having seemingly traversed the great expanse between the players. Finally, both performers submerge themselves completely in this fluid expanse which connects them, where a final ritual of convergence takes place." Ocean Synapse premiered as a live stream media performance via the online Waterwheel platform for the World Water Day Symposium 3WDS14 on March 21, 2014. The two authors/artists were located in opposite hemispheres. Pell performed live from Melbourne, Australia and Burke from New York, United States. Preliminary filming occurred in Oakland, California and Port Phillip Bay, Victoria across the Pacific Ocean. Stay tuned, as Usman Riaz will score the short film in June 2014 adding another layer to this global story. The first of x2 companion video art pieces to the short film ‘Ocean Synapse (2014) by Pell and Burke. Staring: JOHN CLIFFORD FREDERICKS, BENJAMIN BURKE Director, camera: PAUL MORRIS Editor: PAUL MORRIS. Filmed at the Oakland Marina, California US. The second of x2 companion video art pieces to the short film ‘Ocean Synapse (2014) by Pell and Burke. Staring: RUTH SANCHO HUERGE, ELENA MARQUEZ, SARAH DE LA CERDE, SARAH JANE PELL Director, camera: SARAH JANE PELL Additional filming: ELENA MARQUEZ Editor: SARAH JANE PELL. Filmed at Port Phillip Bay, Victoria AU. Post Production: SPELLART. Music: USMAN RIAZ. We also acknowledge the support of WaterWheel, RMIT Media & Communications and the TED Fellows program.

Project website

European Space Agency Topical Team Art Science

Jan. 07, 2011 - Present

The ESA Topical Team Arts & Science [ETTAS] has been established to develop cooperations between the arts, sciences and ESA. We aim to foster and expand the human and cultural aspects of space exploration, and at the same time, offer a means of communication with a reach beyond traditional space-related channels. The arts offer alternative insights into reality - which is explored by science in general, and broadened by the activities conducted by the European Space Agency (ESA) and other space agencies. Similar to the way the members of ESA are ambassadors for spaceflight and science, artists and cultural professionals are ambassadors for human expression, experimentation and exploration.​​ It is the preliminary findings and consensus of the ETTAS members that establishing and sustaining a trans-disciplinary professional community consisting of ESA representatives, scientists and artists would fuel knowledge transfer, and mutual inspiration towards mutually beneficial discovery. CoChairs: Dr. Barbara Imhof, Dr. Sarah Jane Pell, Christian Woldvogal, Dr. Michelle Kotler, A/Prof. Marko Peljhan. ETTAS = artists, curators, scientists, philosophers, ESA members & an Astronaut.

Project website