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Rick Guidice: The NASA Paintings

How do you picture the future?

In the spirit of collaboration and highlighting innovation from the past that is still relevant today, New Museum Los Gatos presents selections from the NASA space settlement paintings rarely seen in public.

The space settlement paintings were created almost forty years ago by Rick Guidice to illustrate publications of research by NASA Ames Research Center and Stanford University on designing and building living communities in space. At that time, before 3D modeling and computer aided design software, scientists relied upon artists to convey their engineering concepts and visually communicate the possibilities that could exist for humanity beyond Earth. Guidice transformed those intellectual ideas into visions of the future that not only served the scientific community, but also informed, and continue to inform, popular culture  just think of the movie Interstellar.

Highlights from the collection include paintings that depict the infrastructure necessary for building, supplying and powering space colonies.  Other paintings depict the actual habitat types proposed during the studies: the Bernal Sphere, physicist Gerard O'Neill's Double Cylinder, and a toroidal structure. Looking at life inside of the colonies ranges from views of the main habitats, to the inside of an agricultural module, complete with chickens, sheep and tractors. In addition to viewing these unique paintings, visitors can take an opportunity to hear the sounds of space and the activities of the International Space Station. 

Guidice’s illustrations of life in space shaped our vision of the future and our collective consciousness. Today, private entrepreneurs and companies, the achievements of the International Space Station and the continued endeavors of NASA all contribute to humankinds quest to settle that last frontier of outer space. What is our new vision of the future? 


Rick Guidice

Rick Guidice attended the Academy of Art College in San Francisco and early in his career worked in architectural design and illustration, advertising and as an editorial illustrator. His work caught the attention of NASA and a fifteen-year relationship began where Guidice produced many full color paintings of various space projects. His interest in architecture and his conceptual abilities have led him into building design. As principal of his own design firm he has designed homes for many of Silicon Valleys leaders. He also finds time to create travel watercolors, life drawings and plein air oil paintings. 


Thank you to our Exhibition Sponsors

Title Sponsors

Heinlein Prize Trust

The Heinlein Prize Trust is pleased to sponsor Rick Guidice: The NASA Paintings. These inspirational visions of space settlement are part of a shared dream of humankind expanding ever outward into space—to the Moon, to the planets, out and onward to the stars. This is also the legacy of Robert and Virginia Heinlein. Space is not to be the realm of the select few. The dream, and the future, belong to us all, of every race and every nation. 

The Heinlein Prize® honors the memory of Robert A. Heinlein, a renowned American author. The purpose of the Heinlein Prize® is to encourage and reward progress in commercial space activities that advances Robert and his wife Virginias dream of humanitys future in space. Efforts include: The Heinlein Prize® for Accomplishments in Commercial Space Activities, The Microgravity Research Competition, The Heinlein Commercial Space Activity Prize, and TheFlight Into the Future international contests, the Have Space Suit  Will Travel educational program, and the online Heinlein Archives.


The Dorsa Family – Frank, Marilyn and Bart


General Sponsor - Anonymous

Official Sponsor - Ken and Connie Hess