Artist's impression of 'Oumuamua. Credit: ESO / M. Kornmesser Artist's impression of 'Oumuamua. Credit: ESO / M. Kornmesser

Fifty years after Stewart Brand campaigned to see a picture of the Whole Earth we are still left in suspense. Head over to Google Maps and study Antarctica. It’s not there. Not fully. Seriously. Pan, zoom. It’s largely fuzz. But the occultation of our home planet is old news. More relevant today is that so is the closed-system countercultural model that continues to pass for a hot take in architecture discourse. Tireless revisions of hippie history warm with our cooking climate while first time Burners mount exhibitions of psychedelic art under anxiety of a disappearing outside. We are at Peak Bucky just as “Spaceship Earth” is going through a minefield of externalities. Beyond academic myopia, fringe scientists, amateur astronomers, psychonauts, seers, skeptics, self-styled Indiana Joneses, alt-archaeologists, shamans, witches, and magicians are mounting an unstoppable campaign for wholeness. Disclosure is on the horizon. I’m talking less about deep state roll out of UFO programs than Oumuamua. This cigar-shaped interstellar projectile covered in organic matter is an undeniable vector for panspermia: life didn’t emerge on Earth, it landed here. We are all aliens. Sorry, Darwin. The coming union of techno-scientific progress with an open system model that sees us as citizens of the cosmos will welcome a neo-Hermetic architecture with fireworks that few of us can even begin to imagine today.

Troy Conrad Therrien

Troy Conrad Therrien is the curator of Architecture and Digital Initiatives at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Adjunct Professor of Architecture at Columbia University. | @troytherrien