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Photography, Art, & the Universe

Carina Nebula - photograph by the James Webb Space Telescope

One of our regular exhibitors is photographer Kip King. He photographs nature in the tradition of Ansel Adams, using bracketed exposures to capture just the right light and depth of field in his images. Shooting with digital SLR cameras, he captures images that become abstract expressions once he prints them to his precise standards. His black & white images capture the complete grey scale, while his color work is notable for the saturated colors he achieves. See Kip's Work Here

Besides his accomplished photographic work, Kip is also an astrophysicist at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics researching the origins of our Milky Way Galaxy.

Kip says, about these first images:

"We are all incredibly excited about the James Webb Space Telescope. The pictures and the data are nothing short of amazing and will revolutionize much of our understanding of astronomy and astrophysics. The JWST was a huge gamble: $10 billion dollars, 20+ years of development, new technology that had to be invented for it to work, etc. To see it all work flawlessly seems miraculous.

It’s also a wonderful example of international collaboration. To cite just two examples: the European Space Agency Adrianne rocket worked so well that the expected life of the telescope doubled from 10 to 20 years because the injection of the JWST into orbit was so precise that the JWST only had to use a small amount of its fuel to perfect the orbit, and the Canadian guidance system works so well that the telescope can achieve higher resolution than originally thought.
It’s a great day for science and astronomy! Let’s celebrate!"

Can we call these images of the Universe Art? They are providing a ton of new information to astronomers and other scientists. To the lay observer, they have us look at things in a different and new way. That is also what art does - challenges us to think about creation and our world anew.