● About the ART

The Sculpture on the Moon

One crisp March morning in 1969, artist Paul van Hoeydonck was visiting his Manhattan gallery when he stumbled into the middle of a startling conversation. Louise Tolliver Deutschman, the gallery's director, was making an energetic pitch to Dick Waddell, the owner. "Why don't we put a sculpture of Paul's on the moon," she insisted. Before Waddell could reply, van Hoeydonck inserted himself into the exchange: "Are you completely nuts? How would we even do it?"

Deutschman stood her ground. "I don't know," she replied, "but I'll figure out a way." She did.

Read about the story of The Fallen Astronaut here

● about the ARTIST

Paul Van Hoeydonck is a Belgian artist best known for his sculpture "Fallen Astronaut," also known as the "Man on the Moon" statue. Created in 1971, "Fallen Astronaut" is a small aluminum sculpture depicting an astronaut in a spacesuit, lying prostrate with an outstretched arm. This artwork was secretly placed on the Moon by the crew of Apollo 15 as a memorial to deceased astronauts and cosmonauts. Van Hoeydonck's statue thus became the first and only artwork on the lunar surface. Despite some controversy surrounding its placement, the sculpture remains a poignant symbol of humanity's exploration of space. Throughout his career, Van Hoeydonck has explored themes of space, technology, and humanity's relationship with the cosmos through various mediums, leaving an indelible mark on the intersection of art and space exploration.

Watch the trailer of the documentary about Paul Van Hoeydonck here