Boston, MA– This summer, the Trustees of Reservations will be presenting a new project by artist Doug Aitken called “New Horizon.” It's a hot air balloon made of a reflective material, like a floating mirror-globe. And yes, you can ride in it.

The Trustees, a nonprofit conservation organization, will showcase the project to the public at various locations throughout the state during the month of July. Visitors will be able to view the public art piece from the ground as it flies overhead, or you’ll be able to float up to the sky in this uniquely crafted work of art with a ticket purchase. Prices for hot air balloon rides have not been released.

The mirrored globe's tour begins on July 12th. “New Horizon” will visit several sites in Massachusetts, starting on Martha's Vineyard at the Long Point Wildlife Refuge and the FARM Institute. Next, the balloon will undock at the Holmes Reservation in Plymouth, followed by the deCordova Sculpture Park in Lincoln, the Crane Estate in Ipswich, Field Farm in Williamstown, and Naumkeag in Stockbridge. The project will make an appearance 14 times at eight Massachusetts locations; the organizers hope to schedule a stop in Boston as well.

Aitken, an American artist, and filmmaker, is the brainchild of this operation. He stated that the hot air balloon was created to reflect the landscape surrounding it. He also said, “It’s a mirage. It’s something which changes continuously. We could be sitting on a sand dune at dusk right now, and above us is this enormous curved reflection of the sun setting… And then [we] see that change, and change again.”
Aitken mentioned that each stop on the balloon’s schedule will give rise to what he calls a “happening.” These “happenings” will include live music and/or a guest speaker.

After the hot air balloon rides are over, the balloon will turn into a light sculpture, serving as a backdrop for live performances and speeches.

The schedule for the “New Horizon” mirror balloon visits is as follows:

  • Friday, July 12th: Long Point Wildlife Refuge on Martha’s Vineyard
  • Saturday, July 13th: The Farm Institute on Martha’s Vineyard
  • Sunday, July 14th: Long Point Wildlife Refuge on Martha’s Vineyard
  • Wednesday, July 17th: Holmes Reservation, Plymouth
  • Saturday, July 20th: deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln
  • Sunday, July 21th: The Crane Estate, Ipswich
  • Monday, July 22th: Possible Boston Event, Location TBD
  • Friday, July 26th: Field Farm, Williamstown
  • Saturday, July 27th: Naumkeag, Stockbridge
  • Sunday, July 28th: Field Farm, Williamstown