Noah built an ark for the animals of Earth to escape the flood. Today we store our seeds in the Svalbard vault in case of global disaster. What if this idea was extended to cover all of humankind’s most valuable art, inventions, and ideas, as well as a sample from our natural world?
We store the knowledge of humankind in libraries. We conserve our art in museums and galleries. We hoard the genes of plants and seeds in the Svalbard vault and record and reproduce our lives digitally. If a legacy is something valuable to be passed down, we should be well on our way to the ultimate gift.
When orbital construction commenced on the ISS Legacy X in 2019, it was the natural extension to these ideas. A safeguard. An archive. A collection that preserves and juxtaposes humankind’s achievements and the diversity of the natural world, and asks us to confront the complex relationship between the two.
Though priceless, our true hope for the Legacy X remains that we will never need to use it.