Darkened Cities by Thierry Cohen imagines the starry skies we’d see in urban areas if we turned off all the lights.

About the project:

Before these pictures can exist, the sky from one place has to be superimposed upon cityscape from another. It is impossible to see this detail in the night sky above a city. Atmospheric and light pollution combine to make looking into the urban sky like looking past bright headlights while driving.

By travelling to places free from light pollution but situated on precisely the same latitude as his cities, Cohen obtains skies which, as the world rotates about its axis, are the very ones visible above the cities a few hours earlier or later. To find the right level of atmospheric clarity, Cohen has to go into the wild places of the earth, the Atacama, the Mojave, the western Sahara.

As more and more of the world’s population becomes urban, and as we lose our connection with the natural world, so it becomes plain that damage is caused by light pollution. There may be connections to certain cancers, and there are psychological burdens of permanent day. The ‘city that never sleeps’ is made up of millions of individuals breaking natural cycles of work and repose. Lose sight of the sky, and you become a rat in a lab.

Cohen hasn’t simply shown us the skies that we’re missing. His cities look dead under the fireworks display above No lights in the windows, no tracers of traffic. They are (in fact) photographed in daylight, when lights shine out less brightly. In urban mythology the city teems with energy and illumines everything around it. Cohen’s pictures are crafted to say the opposite. These are cold cities, cut off from the seemingly infinite energies above.

  1. seagullsandballwhales reblogged this from annehathawaywithwords
  2. wheretheroad-parts reblogged this from staceythinx
  3. channahphotography reblogged this from staceythinx
  4. deadbeatwinter reblogged this from ursa-furor
  5. itscookiezz reblogged this from queenopal
  6. tomokotrainer reblogged this from annehathawaywithwords
  7. annehathawaywithwords reblogged this from queenopal
  8. tickt0cktimeb0mb reblogged this from queenopal
  9. queenopal reblogged this from qlaire
  10. taniacandido reblogged this from jtotheizzoe
  11. cyathusnebulae reblogged this from spockolatey
  12. qlaire reblogged this from dollgirl
  13. tragictropics reblogged this from veraverorum
  14. jessiecutenessdoll reblogged this from staceythinx
  15. aliceauaa reblogged this from dollgirl
  16. ccsays reblogged this from jtotheizzoe
  17. thisfamiliarparable reblogged this from third-eeyee
  18. third-eeyee reblogged this from imaginaycrea
  19. thesinspiredlife reblogged this from dollgirl
  20. imaginaycrea reblogged this from dollgirl
  21. kingofanarchistclowns reblogged this from kittensdarkside
  22. kittensdarkside reblogged this from dollgirl
  23. skies-under-seas reblogged this from dollgirl
  24. dollgirl reblogged this from staceythinx
  25. intrstng-stff reblogged this from nabokovsnotebook and added:
    Darkened Cities by Thierry Cohen imagines the starry skies we’d see in urban areas if we turned off all the lights....
  26. bomber-squad reblogged this from robotpatrol