Text and data visualization by Annapaola. Motion graphic by Daniele.

“When the orbits of these two satellites of ours happened to cross paths, we could be together. Maybe even open our hearts to each other. But that was only for the briefest moment. In the next instant we’d be in absolute solitude.”

– Murakami Haruki, Sputnik Sweetheart

The visualization shows the daily passage of the International Space Station over my house in Genova. Data about ISS location are openly available online and have been collected for two months using IFTTT app.

I chose to start the observation from July 20, 2019 when the Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano began his period of service aboard the Station, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 mission. Each concentric circle represents a day passing by, while the white bars identify time and duration in minutes of every passage of ISS over my head.

ISS has been lurking up there more or less since we were born; a powerful reminder of what humanity can achieve when driven by cooperation spirit and curiosity; but as its future becomes uncertain and space esploration seems nowadays to be following private companies interests, I can’t help but perceive a sense of melancholy mixed with unwavering hope as I feel the days of great ventures and brave men like Luca fade in the darkness of outer space.

Annapaola Vacanti

Workaholic designer and PhD student at UniGe; 30 words aren’t enough to count my erratic interests. Living by Ruby Tuesday’s rule: “There’s no time to lose, catch your dreams before they slip away”.

On Instagram: @annapaolavacanti

Daniele Bonanzinga

Former philosopher at King’s College London (MA), now videoediting newbie, naive marketer and part-time gamer. Either you die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the hipster.

On Instagram: @reganisso_