Official Visitor Website
Back to What's On

In Event of Moon Disaster: What is Truth? season

Contemporary Visual Arts
May 28, 2024 09:30 - Aug 04, 2024 18:00
View all Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts's events

An immersive AI experience which recreates the speech prepared for President Nixon in case the Apollo 11 moon landing was met with disaster.


The show is an Emmy Award-winning interactive experience that is a deep dive into misinformation and conspiracy. Using AI to tell an alternative history, the piece brings to light how an event as influential as the 1969 Apollo 11 moon landing could be manipulated, and how doubt can be cast on even the most well-known of facts.

Despite the United States´s space race rival at the time not even raising any doubts, a YouGov poll from 2019 found 16% of the British public believe the moon landing most likely never happened.

It remains one of the most famous conspiracy theories in the world, and one aspect that has been caught up in the theory is a prepared speech by President Nixon that was to be given in case the mission ended in catastrophic failure. The speech, titled ‘In event of moon disaster’, was of course never delivered, but now visitors to the Sainsbury Centre will be able to experience it like never before.

American new media artist Halsey Burgund (b.1973) and British digital artist Francesca Panetta (b.1977) have reconstructed the speech with the use of state-of-the-art deepfake technology. Played back on a vintage television like the ones that carried the moon-landing broadcast to 1960s living rooms around the world, the installation will highlight the media that are used to either build or destroy trust.


We have a ‘Pay If and What You Can’ ticketing system for the entire museum.

Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts
University of East Anglia
View Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts