ATHENS, Ohio (April 30, 2007) -- Ohio University's Aesthetic Technologies Lab presents SCALE, an astronomy-themed exhibition opening at the Kennedy Museum of Art on Saturday, May 5, with a free public reception at 8 p.m. A free CATS shuttle will run from the Athens Courthouse on Court Street to the Kennedy Museum on a continuous loop from 8 to 10 p.m. on May 5.
The exhibition helps viewers to visualize the universe and their relative place within it. Pieces range from a 10.5-by-85-foot charcoal drawing of the Milky Way galaxy to a replicated 11-foot-diameter telescope that demonstrates how a single grain of sand lodged in the eyepiece can obscure 25,000 galaxies.
This brainchild of Assistant Professor of Art John Sabraw was adopted by a creative collective called aspect, which includes Sabraw's art students, who assisted with every step of the exhibit's creation and installation, and astronomers at the university's Astrophysical Institute.
"Though physically we are very tiny in the vast scheme of things, with our sense of wonder and our ability to perceive things around us and make sense of them, we can span the whole universe with our minds," said Mangala Sharma, one of the collaborating astronomers.
Contacted initially for scientific advice, university astronomers contributed to all facets of the project, from influencing aesthetic decisions to obtaining outer-space images not normally available to artists.
Though high-tech, the exhibit highlights cultural interconnectivity within an astronomical context. Overall, Sabraw hopes "to absolutely shatter the viewers' sense of scale, in relation to themselves, other humans and the universe."
SCALE can be seen at Ohio University's Kennedy Museum of Art through Dec. 16. Support for this exhibit comes from the Ohio University Research Committee, Nielson and Bainbidge Archival Gallery Frames and Art Conserve. This and all Kennedy exhibitions also receive support from the Ohio Art Council, encouraging economic growth, educational excellence, and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans.
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