Two Stops Down

A journal on photography by Thomas Riggs

Columbia II & III

Columbia II

Columbia III

These two images continue on from my end-of-university project, Do You Dream, at the end of which I unearthed a series of dream-journal entries about space. They were filled with a kind of cosmic depression, as I was placed into experimental space missions with friends and loved ones. It was both beautiful and cruel, at once.

There’s one story (as posted previously) which made reference to Space Shuttle Columbia, and in particular its destruction in 2003. It seemed strange that I would remember such a detail.

It was only a few weeks ago that I discovered why. As a child in the late 90s, I had visited Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, and like any excited child I had bought a souvenir. I found it last month, at the back of my closet, and it gave me quite a surprise: it was a flag of Space Shuttle Columbia, from a time when its fateful disaster lay years ahead.

It’s a haunting connection, and one which explains the strange resonance the space-dreams have with me.

Related: Apollo 11 & Modern Aesthetics of ‘Cosmic Pessimism’

This article was published on 4 June 2010.