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Science boldly goes where poetry inspires

30th July 2008 Print
The Space Frontier Foundation, an organization of space professionals dedicated to opening space to human settlement, presented their 2008 "Service to the Frontier" award to American author and actress Vanna Bonta for a poetry magazine celebrating space.

At the annual Foundation black tie banquet, Chairman Bob Werb announced the person receiving the award had no idea. Bonta was reportedly completely surprised to receive the trophy. The award is a polished marble obelisk emerging from rough rock engraved with the Foundation's logo and the recipient's name.

Bonta, who has self-effacingly has described herself as "the wild daughter of a talented woman" is a multitalented actress and prize-winning poet. She is the daughter of an Italian fine arts painter and the grand daughter of Luigi Ugolini, a Florentine writer who is required reading in Italian schools.

Bonta has appeared in feature films and provided routine voice talent to blockbuster movies while staying focused on writing. Her novel Flight drew praise from trade reviews and stirred inspiration and controversy. In the advent of disposable internet culture, Bonta is unusual in being both pop and classic: she was the model for "Woman," a statue in Frederick Hart's Creation on the famous portal of the Washington DC National Cathedral where her likeness is cast in stone. Statesmen and world leaders in the nation's capitol are among the thousands of visitors who pass under the archway statue "Ex Nihilo" where Bonta's likeness is carved in stone.

In The Cosmos Review, Bonta writes: "Poetry absolves spirituality from the dividedness of religions, and provides us with a sanctuary that excludes no one. It is our heart, our spirit, our soul. Call it whatever, without, everything else is nothing but hardware.

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