Cosmic Explorations: at the Intersection of Science, Space, Art, and Culture
The 11th Conference on the Inspiration of Astronomical Phenomena

Conference Dates:  September 20 - 23, 2022
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA

New: Information about the conference proceedings is here.

Unless otherwise noted, most sessions will be held in the Hameetman Auditorium, Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Caltech campus.

All time slots for the talks include Q&A (typically 5 minutes).  The posters will be on display for the duration of the conference.

The talks at the conference will be recorded, and the videos posted on this site. Written proceedings are also planned.

Tuesday, September 20, 2022




5:00 - 7:00 pm Registration, informal wine & cheese (Cahill patio)

Wednesday, September 21, 2022




8:00 - 8:30 Registration, coffee
8:30 - 8:45 Opening remarks
[slides (pdf)] [video]
The organizers
8:45 - 9:00 George Coyne memorial
Rolf Sinclair & Chris Impey
9:00 - 9:30 Black Holes in Science and the Arts [a remote talk]
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Chris Impey
9:30 - 9:50 Anchored to Earth by Starlight [a remote talk]
(slides and video not available)
Annette Lee
9:50 - 10:10

Astronomical  Art - Sharing Our Visions of the Universe
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Rick Sternbach
10:10 - 10:30 Coffee break
10:30 - 11:00 Hollywood Star
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Ed Krupp
11:00 - 11:30

Public Science: Dibner Hall in the Huntington's History of Science Program
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Dan Lewis
11:30 - 12:00 Art and Science in LACMA's Cosmologies Exhibition
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Stephen Little
12:00 - 1:00 Catered lunch
1:00 - 1:30 Einstein Papers Project
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Diana Kormos-Buchwald
1:30 - 2:00 Tracing Shadows: How Astronomers predicted the perfect eclipse to test Einstein’s theory of General Relativity
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Daniel Kennefick
2:00 - 2:30 Leonardo and Mars Exploration
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Charles Elachi
2:30 - 2:55 Writing Outside Lived Experience: All the Way to an Alien World
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Richard Doyle
2:55 - 3:20

Mythology, Cosmogonies, and Indian Science Fiction
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Ashish Mahabal
3:20 - 4:15 Coffee, transportation to Carnegie Observatories
4:15 - 5:00 Carnegie Observatories tour
5:00 - 5:30 History of astronomy in Southern California
John Mulchaey
5:30 - 6:00 Our Galileo Moment Juna Kollmeier
6:00 - 6:30 Transportation back to Caltech
6:30 - 8:00 Conference dinner, Cahill patio

Thursday, September 22, 2022




8:00 - 8:30 Registration, coffee
8:30 - 9:00 The Astronomical Victories of Ancient Greece
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Georges Meylan
9:00 - 9:30 Aerospace and Southern California Culture
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Peter Westwick
9:30 - 9:55

Disturbing the Art-Science Paradigm
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Stephen Nowlin
9:55 - 10:20

The Sun and the Gravity of Radiance
[slides (pdf)] [video]

James Griffith

Departure to Griffith Observatory

11:00 Griffith arrival, tour, lunch
12:15 - 1:00 Equinox  at local noon
1:10 - 1:40

Astronomy in the poetry of T.S. Eliot
(slides not available) [video]

Holly Henry
1:40 - 2:00

Astronomy and natural science in the Peterborough Chronicle
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Marilina Cesario

2:00 - 2:20 Robert Frost and the Leonid Meteor Shower
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Leila Belkora
2:20 - 2:40

Spectroscopy in the public art of Helsinki and the history of science
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Niklas Hietala
2:40 - 3:00

Christian symbolism and the Roman Mithraic cosmology: Mythological parallels based on the interpretation of the astronomical phenomena
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Reza Assasi
3:00 - 3:30

Coffee break

3:30 - 4:30

Roden Crater: Perceiving the Sky with the Unaided Eye

James Turrell & Ed Krupp
4:30 - 4:50

Patere and formelle in Medieval Venice: towards an astronomical reading
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Gloria Vallese
  The Big Picture at Griffith Observatory
S. George Djorgovski
5:00 - 5:50 Planetarium show
5:50 - 7:00 Equinox sunset
7:00 Transportation back to Caltech

Friday, September 23, 2022




8:00 - 8:30 Registration, coffee
8:30 - 9:15 Poetry & Painting:  The Warped Side of our Universe
(slides and video not available)
Kip Thorne & Lia Halloran
9:15 - 9:45

Revolutions in Painting and in Physics: a Parallel History
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Giuseppe Longo
9:45 - 10:05

The Colorful Solar Spectrum Beamed from Mt. Wilson
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Dan Kohne & Jay Pasachoff
10:05 - 10:30

Coffee break


Balancing Artistic Expression and Scientific Rigor in Successful Visualizations for Communications
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Robert Hurt

Data Visualization: Art+Truth=Insight
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Santiago Lombeyda
11:30 - 12:00

Postcards from a Cosmic Traveller: Thomas Ruff's Images of Space
[slides (pdf)] [video]

John Hatch
12:00 - 1:00

Catered lunch

1:00 - 1:50

The Past, Present, and Future of Art and Design at JPL
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Dan Good and Joby Harris

1:50 - 2:20

Bringing the Public Along: JPL’s Role in Advancing Imaging Technology for Planetary Exploration
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Erik Conway
2:20 - 2:50

Waiting to See: Telescopes and the Anticipated View
(slides and video not available)

Elizabeth Kessler
2:50 - 3:20


3:20 - 3:50

The Effect of Unfolding Scientific Discoveries on Visual Images of the Beginning (and the End) of the Universe
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Valerie Shrimplin
3:50 - 4:10

Was Leonardo da Vinci a “Copernican”? Leonardo’s astronomical thought in context
[slides (pdf)] [video]

Richard Poss
4:10 - 4:30 A Celebration of Kepler’s Third Law:  The Unity and Harmony of the Cosmos
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Kim Malville
4:30 - 5:00 A Universe in the Metaverse: Real People, Real Feelings
[slides (pdf)] [video]
Charles White
5:00 - 5:15

Closing remarks

5:15  Adjourn

Saturday, September 24, 2022


Mt. Wilson and Palomar field trips - the registration is now closed



Poster Title
Danielle Adams Rising Star Paradigms: Encoding Seasonal Times in Arabic Saj’a Rhymes
Marea Atkinson The Hum of the Universe
Gordon Houston The Lick Observatory: Building the Foundation of Astrophysics
Ivy & Eugene Jiang The Double Meaning of 40.5° on Stonehenge and Bush Barrow Lozenge
George Latura Two Letters, the Cosmos: From Plato to Kepler and Galileo
Jamie Molaro Making Space: A workshop on space, data-driven art, and society for artists and educators
Stephen Nowlin SKY Exhibition: Art+Science on the Provincial and Universal Above
Marilyn Roberts The Recurring Seasons: A story-almanac possibly preserved in the Beowulf epic
Valerie Shrimplin Dark Skies and Light Pollution: An Art-Historical Approach
Rick Sternbach An art sampler from the International Association of Astronomy Artists
Gary Wells Winslow Homer’s The Lookout - “All’s Well”: Time, Order, and the Night Sky in Later Nineteenth Century Painting