Mars Molecule Project Arrives In Nashville

Posted at 1:17 PM, Jan 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-07 14:33:43-05

Three new sculptures that look like they arrived from space have been placed in Centennial Park and next to Pinewood Social, but they appeared rather mysteriously.

“It looks almost otherworldly or something,” Jeremy Jones said after seeing the sculptures for the first time.

Rafer White agreed saying, “Man, that’s a freaking orb from outer space!”

The sculptures are part of the Mars Molecule Project -- the brainchild and product of Mario Martinez -- a sculpture from San Francisco, also known as MARS-1. 

“You can tell it’s from space, man,” White exclaimed. 

Two of the Mars Molecule sculptures have been placed in Centennial Park, but they were placed there with no announcement, no signs -- nothing. According to Metro Parks, that was on purpose.

“It’s been a great conversation starter for people,” Tim Netsch with Metro Parks said. “I think the intent for them was for them to just appear here and to start some conversation.”

In addition to the two sculptures placed in Centennial Park, a different Mars Molecule sculpture was placed near Pinewood Social.

The sculptures are made out of bronze and weigh thousands of pounds. They were created using a 3D printer and the ancient “lost wax” sculpting technique.

“This is some world-class art that everybody has access to,” Netsch explained.

Metro Parks worked with The Conservancy for the Parthenon and Centennial Park to bring the Mars Molecule Project to Nashville. Metro Parks said it fits in with their Centennial Park Master Plan.

“Centennial Park is about cultural arts, performing arts, visual arts, and this is a great fit,” Netsch said. “This is some world-class art that everybody has access to.” 

The sculptures are on loan from an anonymous art collector and will be on display until May, and then they’ll disappear just as quickly and mysteriously as they appeared.

According to Metro Parks, people are invited to enjoy the sculptures in every way possible, even by climbing on top of them.

There is a social media campaign put in place, as well. People are encouraged to take pictures with the Mars Molecule sculptures and share their pictures on social media with the hashtag #MarsMoleculesNashville. 

The Mars Molecule Project was brought to Nashville at no cost to taxpayers.