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'Picturing the Cosmos' Reveals the Hidden Art in Hubble's Images

By Daniel Rasmus
Popmatters

kessler_picturingWe are attracted to images of the universe for many reasons. The proof that our parochial neighborhood is but a fragment of unimaginable vastness humbles some. Others see stars and gas and dust – mere representations of an underlying physics. Some imagine proof of a creator’s hand. Others, like Elizabeth Kessler, see the universe as both art and canvas.

When the Hubble Space Telescope was launched on 24 April 1990, its multi-camera approach to near-earth orbit astronomy was innovative, and the results, highly anticipated. With its lenses free of atmospheric distortion and the increasing effects of light and other pollutants, Hubble could take human perception to nearly inconceivable distances in both space and time.

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Picturing the Cosmos