Week 8/The Mystery of Space/Jay Park

For the most part, the terrestial realm has exhausted itself of mystery and awe, as satellites peer down on any and every inch of the earth. The world has shrunk in this sense, no longer beholding any surprises of the beyond. Indeed, Earth is much simpler now, with equations to find answers and answers to extinguish mystery. Our sense of imagination has been drying up since the day we began to rationalize phenomenons and criticize improbabilities. But as the curiosity in our planet diminishes, our curiosity in the universe begins to grow. Einstein ended his life without finishing his final quest for knowledge beyond our simple world, transfixed on searching for the ultimate, overarching equation of the universe. Hawkins’ is riddled by this same curiosity for understanding the beyond. What is it about space that has the greatest minds perplexed and excited? Mystery. It is frankly quite simple. The lack of answers in a mystery encourages hypothesization. The absence of proven answers promote multitudes invested interests and amateur exploration. Space is the greatest mystery territory known to man as of now. There are many reasons why. Primarily, it is difficult to explore and our technology limits the extent of accessibility to those parts we’ve already explored–such as the moon and mars. Secondly, it is the vastness of the territory, specifically the infiniteness, that miniaturizes mankind and consequently diminishes our feeling of importance. 

 

This feeling and movement of space art is a relatively new and contemporary movement, beginning sometime along the completion of mapping the oceans and lands. The artists and audiences of space art has pushed the boundaries to encompass anyone raptured by the questions they ask themselves when looking up at the night sky. Space art isn’t reserved to an elitist group of avante garde thinkers, but to anyone who feels small due to the universe. Fueled with limitless imagination, space art thrives on the internet. Spherical planets, disc rings, space dust,  rays of light all are typical aspectst of space art seen online that guide our imagery of space. The vibrant colors and georgeous illustrations have only come to accountable accuracy after the technological advances of telescopic imagery that provided the first color glimpses of our universe. Before the advant of telescopes powerful enough to capture these breathtaking photographs, astronomers charted stars by hand to determine the shape of the Milky Way. The resulting image of these charts looked like a messy algebra plot problem. These pictures were the first concepts of our visual understanding of space. One of the first pictures taken was that of Earth from space in 1946. The black and white photo provided only the structural image of space, leaving the blanks to be colored in by our imaginations. Until recently, space art has taken telescopic photos and embellished them with personality, creativity, and imagination. Yet in all the excitement over the topic, artists unanimously agreed upon the characteristics of massiveness, geometry,  and overwhelming imagery. Only recently has technology allowed the Hubble telescope and more to produce the photographs that assert our imaginations’ proximity to the truths. 

 

Space is the new frontier, and it’s here to capture the imagination of the future generations for some time. The mystery and vastness double up as the perfect quest of the 21st century average man. Space is there for anyone to look up to and wonder about. It’s there and will stay there, tugging at our insecurities as a miniscule piece of the much vaster universe.

 

http://www.airspacemag.com/photos?c=y&articleID=16045732

http://www.astropix.com/HTML/D_SUM_S/MILKYWAY.HTM

http://boojum.as.arizona.edu/~jill/NS102_2006/Lectures/MilkyWay/milkyway.html

http://hubblesite.org/gallery/

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