Robert McCall: Revealing His Cosmic Canvases

/ July 8, 2023/ art, artists, Artists you should know, blogging, series, tradtional art/ 0 comments

Robert McCall: an artist you should know.

This is another entry in my continuing series of “Artists You Should Know”.

Robert McCall stamps.jpg
By NASA –, Public Domain, Link


In the realm of artistic visionaries, there are few who possess the ability to transport us beyond the boundaries of our world and into the vast reaches of the cosmos. Among them stands Robert “Bob” McCall, a renowned illustrator whose brushstrokes have painted celestial wonders and inspired generations to dream of the uncharted frontiers of space. Join us as we delve into the captivating life and works of this visionary artist, who has left an indelible mark on the canvas of human imagination.

Robert McCall "First men on the Moon"
First Men on the Moon. Credits:, University of Arizona Museum of Art.

A Visionary Takes Flight

Born in 1919 in Columbus, Ohio, Robert McCall’s artistic journey began as a young boy with a deep fascination for aviation. His passion for flight soared alongside his artistic talents, eventually leading him to serve as a World War II pilot. It was during his time in the military that McCall discovered his unique ability to translate the grandeur of the skies onto canvas, capturing the essence of flight with breathtaking precision.

Robert McCall Poster artwork for 2001: A Space Odyssey. "Orion Leaving Space Station"
“Orion Leaving Space Station”, the iconic image used on the movie poster for 2001: A Space Odyssey. Credit: Robert McCall/MGM

From the Earth to the Stars

McCall’s artistic horizons expanded far beyond the earthly realms. His works captured not only the beauty of our planet but also the boundless wonders of the universe. Through his brushstrokes, he wove together the intricate dance of celestial bodies, the vibrant colors of nebulae, and the awe-inspiring majesty of space exploration.

The NASA Connection

One cannot speak of Robert McCall without acknowledging his deep connection with NASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. McCall’s artistic genius found its perfect match in the agency’s pioneering spirit and their shared belief in the power of imagination. His collaboration with NASA spanned decades, producing iconic artworks that adorned the walls of NASA facilities and inspired countless individuals to reach for the stars.

Robert McCall Space mural for NASA
The Space Mural – A Cosmic View, at the National Air and Space Museum.

Elevating the Ordinary

McCall possessed a remarkable ability to infuse even the most mundane objects with an ethereal sense of wonder. Through his lens, a simple astronaut’s helmet became a portal to otherworldly realms, and a space shuttle transformed into a vessel of dreams. His art served as a reminder that the extraordinary lies within the ordinary, waiting to be unveiled through the lens of imagination.

Robert McCall's mural for "Gloria in Excelsis Deo"
Gloria in Excelsis Deo by Robert McCall, via

Capturing Human Spirit

Beyond celestial vistas and spacecraft, McCall’s works also celebrated the indomitable spirit of humanity. Whether depicting the triumphs of Apollo missions or the camaraderie of astronauts, his art reflected the resilience, curiosity, and unity that define our species. Through his paintings, he illuminated our collective yearning to explore the unknown, to push boundaries, and to leave our mark on the cosmos.

Legacy and Influence

Robert McCall’s legacy continues to reverberate through the realms of art, science, and popular culture. His visionary artwork graced movie posters, book covers, and the pages of esteemed publications. He became a bridge between the realms of science and art, captivating both scientists and the general public alike. McCall’s work, with its ability to ignite our sense of wonder, remains a testament to the power of artistic expression in capturing the human imagination.

Robert “Bob” McCall’s artistic voyage through the cosmic landscapes of our dreams has left an indelible mark on the tapestry of human creativity. His brushstrokes carried us beyond the confines of our world, sparking our imagination, and inspiring countless individuals to explore new frontiers. Through his art, McCall dared us to dream of what lies beyond, and to appreciate the beauty and potential of our own planet. As we gaze upon the boundless night sky, we can’t help but be reminded of the extraordinary legacy of this visionary artist, whose works will continue to inspire us to reach for the stars.

Ian is an avid fan of art, but has no money to buy nice art. He’s hoping this website will give him capital to buy good art. You, also, should buy good art. You should also contact him to build websites and graphics. Let him help you with your online presence and business. Get in contact here

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