- Netherlands, Colombia
- 14 min.
Cosmos and Paleontology is a visual essay on Ivan Efremov (1907-1972), a Soviet paleontologist and science fiction author. Before the 1957 launch of Sputnik—the first man-made object to orbit the Earth—Efremov had already written about humans traveling through interstellar space, recovering fossils in galaxies thousands of light years away. Cosmos and Paleontology interweaves this farseeing prose with archival and present-day material of persons, objects, and locations related to Efremov, such as the Paleontological Institute in Moscow, where he penned several short stories and novels. Cosmos and Paleontology explores Efremov’s ideas of deep space and deep time, combining prehistoric skeletons with cosmonaut relics, footage of dinosaur excavations in the Gobi Desert with Soviet cinematic adaptations of future space travel. At its core, Cosmos and Paleontology is a journey with a man who envisioned ancient Earth and the far reaches of the universe alike, defying the known limits of primordial life and death both in this planet and beyond.