Archive for the ‘Press’ Category

The Road to Maker Faire: Greetings Earthlings!

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

The Raygun Gothic Rocketship and her crew arrived in San Mateo, Earth today, on the 17th day of the 5th month in the year 2010. After an uneventful 12-hour trans-galactic journey across the western reaches of the Sobay Nebula, our sturdy and resilient little ship finally settled down on the grassy planetary landscape that will soon be densely populated by the rare and interesting Humanus Makeriferous Species. We look forward to studying their kind…

The RGR Crew will be docked for approximately seven Earth days in order to take on supplies, refresh our reading material, and to grant shore leave to the crew. Ship tours will commence on the day of the Saturn and will continue until the moon rises on the day of the Sun.

To all you Space Cadets out there! The RGR Crew is recruiting! Stop by our space port and pick up a Raygun Gothic Rocketeer recruitment packet today!

Follow the exploits of the RGR Crew on the The road to Maker Faire on Make: Online

RGR Lead Artists interviewed for the Make Blog

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

MFBA: Interview with Raygun Gothic Rocketship crew


Maker Faire Bay Area, the world’s largest DIY festival, is right around the corner, taking place at the San Mateo Fairgrounds on May 22nd and 23rd. One of the biggest new projects coming to the Faire this year is the Raygun Gothic Rocketship, pictured above and hand-crafted by a large and dedicated crew. We sent seven questions to the crew’s three lead artists, Sean Orlando, Nathaniel Taylor, and David Shulman. Here’s what they had to say.

1. Tell us about the project you’re bringing to Maker Faire.
The Raygun Gothic Rocketship is built upon a future-rustic vision of yesterday’s tomorrow. Aesthetically based on 1930s – early 1950s science fiction, the rocketship is a 41-foot-tall immersive environment, designed to carry explorers into the realm of rayguns, strange planets, and aliens, friendly or otherwise.


With 3 habitable decks, visitors can view and interact with a variety of ships systems and alien specimens. Visitors can enter the ship via the Engine Room & Life-Sciences Bio Lab. Once inside the engine room, look down into the engine compartment to see The Uira Plasma-drive engine. Cases and cages on the walls contain various creatures we’ve collected in our travels. Check on the ships status with the Systems Monitor, or speak to the Pilot via the tele-com.


Moving up a deck, you’ll find Crew Quarters, Navigation, Communications & Remote Sensing. Check our approach trajectories using the Neutronium Scanner, confirm our location using one of several navigational devices, or deploy a remote probe via the Hollis 9000 Remote Science System. Finally, you can climb up to the flight deck and pilots chair. Take command of the ship and prepare for launch!

2. How did you hear about Maker Faire and why did you decide to participate?
As a group, we have been fans of or involved with the Maker movement and Maker Faire for many years. Many of our crew have shown other works, both large and small, at past MAKE events in association with such groups as The Crucible, Applied Kinetic Arts, Kinetic Steam Works, and SRL.

3. Tell us about yourself. How did you get started making things and who are your inspirations?
The three of us all have different stories.


David Shulman: I began making things with my father as a kid — mostly simple furniture. He inspired me in that he was an attorney, yet was not afraid to get his hands dirty, or try new things, and I have followed a similar path.


Sean Orlando: I’ve been tinkering and inventing for as long as I can remember. Creating three-dimensional artworks resonated with me more than any of the other art practice that I experimented with. My father was an aerospace engineer and exposed me to airplane and rocket engineering at an early age. The engineering challenges, collaborative creative process, and immersive potential of large-scale installations allowed me to explore a whole new level of art making… with friends.


Nathaniel Taylor: Nathaniel was born with a tool in his hands. He is the Chief Operating Officer and creative mind behind Radio Robot.

4. Is your project strictly a hobby or a budding business? Does it relate to your day job?
Our project is both. Through the RGR and past projects (such as the Steampunk Tree House), we are exploring the concept of cooperative art as both a focus for creative community, and an opportunity to generate income for our member artists. The Five Ton Crane Arts Group was formed as a direct result of these successful collaborations.

5. What new idea (in or outside of your field) has excited you most recently?
We are constantly inspired and motivated by artistic invention, clever engineering solutions, and creative collaboration. We strive to create immersive environments that combine sculpture, kinetics, performance, interactivity, and creative collaboration. It’s exciting to see the latest inventions coming out of Europe by such groups as Royal de Luxe and La Machine.

6. What is your motto?
“Art is better with friends.”
“We aim to be rather than to seem.”
“Just because it hasn’t been done before, doesn’t mean it can’t be done.”

7. What advice would you give to the young makers out there just getting started?
Just do it. Don’t hesitate for fear of challenge or failure. Don’t get caught up in what “seems” to be impossible. Just because it hasn’t been done before, doesn’t mean it can’t be done. The benefits of your realized ideas are not only experienced in the end result of your experiments. There is so much fun to also be had through the process of invention, creative problem solving, overcoming challenges, and working together as a team.

Thanks, gentlemen, words of widsom for sure! We’re excited to see the Rocketship in its full glory at Maker Faire. You can still get discounted tickets until May 12. For all the information you need, head over to the Maker Faire website.

RGR featured on the cover of the Mountain View Post

Friday, April 16th, 2010

Moffett a space-age playground for ‘Yuri’s Night’
Stunt planes, hip-hop, crazy art and more mark NASA celebration in honor of Russian cosmonaut

Click here for the full article

NBC Bay Area: The Raygun Gothic Rocketship at NASA Ames for Yuri’s Night

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

The Rocketship was a huge hit at this weekend’s Yuri’s Night Festival at the NASA Ames Research Center ion Mountain View California.

First press is coming in now…check it out!

The Raygun Gothic Rocketship featured on the 2010 Maker Faire poster

Friday, April 2nd, 2010

The Raygun Gothic Rocketship featured on the NASA Ames website

Friday, March 26th, 2010

Click HERE for the full story

photo by Sean Donnelly

A 40-foot high rocket from the future and a 20-foot tall bird with its head and wings on fire will light up on Saturday, April 10, 2010 at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif. Is this a science experiment gone awry? No, it’s all part of Yuri’s Night.

Yuri’s Night is a world space party that commemorates the anniversary of the first human spaceflight, by Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin on April 12, 1961 and the first space shuttle mission 20 years later. An estimated 10,000 people are expected to attend the Bay Area celebration from noon to midnight.

During this “mash-up” of music, dance, technology, art and space, two large-scale art installations that previously have been exhibited at the Burning Man Festival will be displayed: the “Raygun Gothic Rocketship” and “Angel of the Apocalypse.”

What these two giant sculptures share in common is that they both were built by dozens of team members collectively working together.

Sean Orlando, one of three lead artists for “Raygun Gothic Rocketship,” said the effort required the work of 85 artists, engineers, fabricators, scientists and computer engineers. “One of the remarkable things about this group of people is how few issues there are,” said Orlando. “When it comes to actual work and the design process, it truly is very collaborative.”

The retro-futuristic rocket stands four stories high, weighs 3,500 pounds and requires a crane with a 40-foot, 5-ton installation capability. The structure is divided into three sections: a life sciences bio lab, engineering room, crew quarters and a command module. Interior details include “alien specimens” in the life sciences bio lab, a zero gravity bed and a deployable rocket launcher.

“We’re sci-fi geeks who like to play with machines and tools,” said lead artist David Shulman. “Our inspiration was from the 1930s through early 1950s when technology was within sight, but the reality of what it would entail or the Cold War pessimism had not set in yet.”

The term, “Raygun Gothic” is an artistic style coined by science fiction author William Gibson. Orlando said the name refers to how people in the past imagined the future.

“We’re thrilled to be able to bring it to a NASA facility and share it with people who are interested in space exploration—both the serious side and the fun side,” said Orlando.

Click HERE for the full story

The Rocketship scheduled to land @ Yuri’s Night Bay Area 2010

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

The Rocketship and Tom Sepe’s RGR Moon Rover have been cleared for landing at Yuri’s Night, NASA Ames in Mountain View, California on planet Earth. April 9-10, 2010 C.E.

BEST OF BURNING MAN ’09 from LA Weekly

Wednesday, September 16th, 2009


View the whole slideshow here:

Fire in the sky

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

Ray Gun Gothic Rocket at Burning Man

Rocket Science

If there was one piece of artwork that dominated conversation this year it was “Raygun Gothic Rocketship,” a kitschy, retro-futuristic 40-foot rocket that looked like something out of a Jules Verne movie adaptation circa 1957. The excitement about the piece was centered on its scheduled “launch” set for Friday night. Debate about this “rocket launch” raged throughout BRC:

“It’s a joke. There’s no way they’re getting that thing off the ground.”

“I heard they’re only hoping to get it up four or five feet.”

“If they actually try to launch that thing, I’m sure it’ll fail miserably.”

“They’re probably just going to blow it up.”

“Well, whatever happens, I’m sure it’ll be cool.”

Read the rest of the article here:

Raygun Gothic Rocketship Launch — Burning Man 2009

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

Link to Vimeo page: