Light is the messenger of the universe. Long before the invention of telescopes, our ancestors could look up into the sky to contemplate the patterns and mysteries of the cosmos. From the phases of the moon to the changes in the seasons, from rainbows to eclipses of the sun, light makes it possible for each of us to explore and understand nature. Today, astronomers use cutting-edge technology to take pictures of the universe—planets, exploding stars, galaxies, and even black holes—pictures that allow us to see nature in entirely new ways. Images of stellar nurseries unveil the young light of newborn stars, while the cosmos' most ancient light reveals that the universe is old, dynamic, and vast. Artists, meanwhile, use light and color as practical tools of communication and as metaphors for excavating the heart. Although we are small compared to the cosmos, every individual is precious, and art has the compelling power to evoke community and bring people together.


Dr. Nia Imara

Dr. Nia Imara

Assistant Professor,
Astronomy & Astrophysics Department,
UC Santa Cruz

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