heic1701 — Organisation Release
Astronomy and art combine in a brand new Hubble-inspired exhibition
20 January 2017
For 26 years, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has been expanding our cosmic horizons. In capturing an astronomical number of images, Hubble has revealed and shared the beauty, wonder, and complexity of the Universe. Now on 1 February 2017, a new exhibition called Our Place in Space will open in Venice, Italy. It will present a breathtaking visual journey, through our Solar System and out to the edge of the known Universe, alongside Hubble-inspired works by contemporary Italian artists.
The new travelling exhibition Our Place in Space will be on display from 1 February to 17 April 2017 in the Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti, Palazzo Cavalli Franchetti, on the banks of the Grand Canal in Venice, Italy. By seamlessly integrating perspectives from both artists and astronomers, it will inspire visitors to think about how humanity fits into the grand scheme of the Universe.
Since the dawn of civilisation, we have gazed up into the night sky and attempted to make sense of what we saw there, asking fundamental questions such as: Where do we come from? What is our place in the Universe? And are we alone? As we ask those questions today and new technology expands our horizons further into space, our yearning for their answers only grows. Since its launch in 1990, Hubble has continued this quest for answers. It symbolises the human urge to explore, because it contains technologically-advanced instruments designed to discover and observe unexplored objects in the Universe, and also because it was designed to be serviced in orbit by astronauts. Hubble has not only made countless astronomical discoveries but also brought astronomy into the public eye, satisfying our curiosity, firing our imagination, and greatly impacting our culture, society, and art.
Our Place in Space features iconic Hubble images, extending from our own cosmic backyard — the faces of Mars, Jupiter’s Great Red Spot, Saturn’s intense aurorae — out to a stunning selection of far-flung galaxies, nebulae, and other astronomical phenomena. But alongside the scientific interpretation of the Universe, the exhibition also taps into the vast imaginations of prominent Italian artists, who have produced pieces inspired by what Hubble has seen. The artworks range from oil and mixed media on canvas to alabaster-sculpted nebulae, and from planetary spheres encrusted with mosaics of Murano glass to a spacecraft built from recycled wood, plastic, and toys. A combination of images and videos, artworks and installations enable visitors to experience the different visions of astronomers and artists. This fusion of science and art provides a more unique and complete view of our Universe and our understanding of it.
The Instituto Veneto has previously hosted the exhibition The Hubble Space Telescope: Twenty Years at the Frontiers of Science, or Il telescopio spaziale Hubble, alle frontiere dell’Universo, in 2010. This exhibition was a stellar success, visited by 12 000 people over the course of a single month, and it marked the beginning of a partnership between the Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti, the European Space Agency, and the Space Telescope Science Institute.
After being on display in Venice the exhibition will be shown in the medieval town of Chiavenna, Italy, from 5 May to 31 August 2017. There it will be hosted at the Palazzo Vertemate and other nearby palaces. Afterwards it will be put on display in Garching, Germany, in the ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre. Further stops in other European countries, the USA and even Australia are planned. Entrance to the exhibition is free of charge on all occasions.
The Hubble Space Telescope is a project of international cooperation between ESA and NASA.
The exhibition is curated by Antonella Nota and Anna Caterina Bellati.
Participating artists are Antonio Abbatepaolo, Marco Bolognesi, Paola Giordano, Ettore Greco, Mario Paschetta, Alessandro Spadari, Marialuisa Tadei, Sara Teresano, Mario Vespasiani, Dania Zanotto.
The exhibition executive committee consists of Ken Carpenter (NASA HST), Lars Lindberg Christensen (ESO), Carol Christian (STScI), Roger Davies (University of Oxford, UK), Mathias Jäger (ESA/Hubble) and Hussein Jirdeh (STScI).
- Our Place in Space
- Istituto Veneto di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti, Palazzo Cavalli Franchetti
- Italian version of press release (PDF 541 KB)
- Hubblesite press release
- Our Place in Space brochure
ESA HST Project Scientist, STScI
Anna Caterina Bellati
ESA/Hubble, Public Information Officer
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 176 62397500