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Grand Valley to exhibit �History of Space Photography�

  • The galaxy Messier 101 is a swirling spiral of stars, gas, and dust. It is nearly twice as wide as the Milky Way galaxy. The photo, captured by NASA�s Spitzer Space Telescope, reveals the galaxy's delicate dust lanes as yellow-green filaments.
  • The Great Comet of 1882, photographed from Cape Town, South Africa, by David Gill.
  • NASA�'s image of Earth, as seen from Apollo 17, in December 1972.

Posted on January 08, 2014

From the earliest black-and-white photographs of the moon to the most recent images taken from NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity, The History of Space Photography exhibition features 50 noteworthy images from the last 50 years of space exploration.

History of Space Photography
Exhibition, January 15-March 21
Grand Valley State University Art Gallery
1121 Performing Arts Center, Allendale Campus

An opening reception will be held on Wednesday, January 15 from 5-7 p.m. A special Sky Viewing event will also be held, weather permitting, from 6-8 p.m. with Doug Furton, professor of physics and astronomy, with an opportunity to view the moon and Jupiter through a classic 4-inch Unitron refractor telescope.

The stunning and beautiful visuals, including video projections of celestial animations, were captured by astronauts, astronomers and data visualization experts. Displayed in chronological order, the exhibition imparts a sense of awe amid a history lesson.

It begins with a grainy black and white image of The Great Comet of 1882, photographed from Cape Town, South Africa by David Gill. More recent images include views of the Earth that reveal Brazil’s rainforest clearings, and images that illustrate the coastline of Japan, before and after the 2011 tsunami.

The exhibition is organized by the California/International Arts Foundation. The vast majority of images are from 1960-2011, with one vintage print from 1840, and others as recent as 2012. Images from this exhibit will become part of Grand Valley’s permanent collection and be displayed primarily in the new Science Laboratory Building on the Allendale Campus, expected to be completed by fall 2015.

Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursdays. Free and open to the public. 

For more information on the exhibit and additional programming, call the GVSU Art Gallery at (616) 331-2563 or visit


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