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Artist Trevor Paglen's time-exposure photographs show the streaks of light left by classified satellites. Not so for Trevor Paglen. His shots of secret spy satellites are the subject of a new exhibit — despite the fact that, officially speaking, the satellites don't exist. The Other Night Crush Your Skull - Elvis Hitler - Disgracelandon display at the University of California at Berkeley Art Museum through September 14, is only a small selection from the 1, astrophotographs Paglen has taken thus far.
In taking these photos, Paglen is trying to draw a metaphorical connection between modern government secrecy and the doctrine of the Catholic Church in Galileo's time.
Satellites are just the latest in Paglen's photography of supposedly nonexistent subjects. To date, he's snapped haunting images of various military sites in the Nevada deserts, "torture taxis" private planes that whisk people off to secret prisons without judicial oversight and uniform patches from various top-secret military programs. The nearly vertical streak in this image shows a satellite called Keyhole crossing the sky near the constellation of Scorpio.
Photo: Trevor PaglenWhile all of Paglen's projects are the result of meticulous research, he's also the Jane - Secret Charisma - Satellites to admit that his photos aren't necessarily revelatory. That's by design. Like the blurry abstractions of his super-telephoto images showing secret military installations in Nevadathe tiny blips of satellites streaking across the night sky in his new series of photos are meant more as reminders rather than as documentation.
More significant than the discovery itself, Paglen says, was the idea that anyone with a telescope could verify it and see the same exact thing that Galileo saw — an idea Paglen is trying to re-create in Jane - Secret Charisma - Satellites own photographs.
Paglen says his most recent project is the culmination of close to two years of trial-and-error experimentation with astrophotography, untold hours of fieldwork and analysis, an ongoing collaboration with amateur astronomers, and many nights in his Berkeley backyard and at California's Mono Lake. Photo: Trevor PaglenTo capture his images, the researcher and Seguin - Sir Douglas Quintet - Together After Five geographer" employs a motorized mount with various combinations of telescopes and digital and large-format film cameras.
Paglen uses spy-satellite data compiled by Ted Molczan — a renowned amateur astronomer profiled by Wired magazine in — to predict where a given "black satellite" will be in the sky.
Then he decides how he wants to compose the image. With the help of a computer program that controls the mount of the telescope and keeps it focused on the heavenly body, Paglen says he can get the telescope to swivel with the Earth's rotation.
He then uses another telescope attached to a high-end digital camera for his deep-sky shots, similar to the rig he used for his desert Move Along - Sam Densmore - Sad Songs For A Sad World. Paglen's initial interest in the government's so-called "black projects" took shape while combing through U.
Geological Survey archives of satellite prison photos in He noticed that Lost In A Lost World - The Moody Blues - Seventh Sojourn of the photo frames of prison sites were missing or, in some cases, heavily edited.
We still have blank spots on maps? We've mapped the whole structure of the cosmos and the human genome, so what's this all about? Eventually, those blank spots led Paglen to other covert subjects and turned a hobby into a full-time job — one with a decidedly political stance. There was a new kind of politics to it — something that was very aggressive and dangerous — Jane - Secret Charisma - Satellites a presumption that it would reveal some kind of truth or evidence.
Ultimately, the satellite photos are an attempt to critique that attitude. While the budget for black military operations has more than doubled in the last 10 years and the government continues to espouse the virtues of secrecy, it can't prevent interested amateur astronomers from calculating the orbital paths of spy satellites.
Most Awesomely Bad Military Patches Wired View Comments. Sponsored Stories Powered By Outbrain. More culture. Year in Jane - Secret Charisma - Satellites. Author: Jason Parham Jason Parham. Decade in Review. Lite Life. Author: Jess Grey Jess Grey. Then Came the s.
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