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General Astronomy >> Light Pollution

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Kfrank
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/20/08

Loc: Northern Colorado
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: barasits]
      #5448787 - 09/30/12 04:41 PM

Quote:

Rafael, I think dark sky activists may be the least of your problems:

'Open Air' spotlights boring banality

Best regards,

Geoff




Geoff,

What would you have said had this critic LIKED the display?

I ask this simply because you have offered this one man's opinion as a vindication of your beliefs regarding this exhibit. Had he liked it, would you have bothered to reference it? My guess is no, you would not.


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barasits
sage


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Chicago
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: Kfrank]
      #5448817 - 09/30/12 05:02 PM

Ken, you guessed wrong.

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TOM O
sage
*****

Reged: 03/30/06

Loc: Joshua Tree CA.
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: barasits]
      #5448946 - 09/30/12 06:31 PM

It appears this thread has now reached the top ten list for views on this forum..... at least as far as the first ten pages would indicate! So, how significant is "Open Air?"

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MawkHawk
sage
*****

Reged: 08/23/09

Loc: SE Michigan, USA
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: barasits]
      #5448949 - 09/30/12 06:32 PM

Quote:

Rafael, I think dark sky activists may be the least of your problems:

'Open Air' spotlights boring banality

Best regards,

Geoff




Classic. "Banal and boring"

Oh, and btw, the artist stated above that about 3,000 people attended the opening, but I've read media reports that it was more like 300...soooo....


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MawkHawk
sage
*****

Reged: 08/23/09

Loc: SE Michigan, USA
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: MawkHawk]
      #5448957 - 09/30/12 06:35 PM

"PS I do appreciate the irony of him not liking my lights for not being powerful enough: "The beams aren't sufficiently powerful (I suppose given the location they couldn't be), and they're attenuated by the ambient light from nearby Center City high-rises and even from the "light box" atop the adjacent Barnes Foundation." "

What a city. Light pollution drowning out light pollution...


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Fred1
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/19/07

Loc: Somewhere in the Orion Spur
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: MawkHawk]
      #5449014 - 09/30/12 07:16 PM

Quote:

"PS I do appreciate the irony of him not liking my lights for not being powerful enough: "The beams aren't sufficiently powerful (I suppose given the location they couldn't be), and they're attenuated by the ambient light from nearby Center City high-rises and even from the "light box" atop the adjacent Barnes Foundation." "

What a city. Light pollution drowning out light pollution...




Made possible with a $250,000 donation. I sometimes shudder at what money can buy.


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TOM O
sage
*****

Reged: 03/30/06

Loc: Joshua Tree CA.
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: Fred1]
      #5449099 - 09/30/12 08:12 PM

For an idea of input and activity/ as of this post 4246 views, 185 posts,

first post 08/27/12/04:45PM, last post 09/30/12 07:16PM

List of posters... in order of appearance.

1- Dark Sky Scott
2- TOM O
3- Fred1
4- Barasits
5- csrlice12
6- csa/montana
7- RonUwood
8- RobbW
9- GeneT
10- Tonk
11- MawkHawk
12- Darkchairman
13- ForgottenMobject
14- amicus sidera
15- Kfrank
16- BigC
17- Tony Flanders
18- Tori
19- aezoss
20- Audrey Fischer
21- dwright
22- lozanohemmer


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TOM O
sage
*****

Reged: 03/30/06

Loc: Joshua Tree CA.
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: TOM O]
      #5449332 - 09/30/12 10:33 PM

Rafael,
I would like ask if, perhaps, it might be possible if some of Franklin Institute Geeks could assemble some webcams and webcast the astronomy event Dr. Pitts is presenting with you. I, for one, would really like to see the event and get a better picture of what turns out. I'd think it is an easy job to do, and many could join in on seeing, for themselves, what happens. It could be that some of the astronomy enthusiasts in the Philadelphia area can express ideas and opinions as well as others to bring the insight that seems to be unclear to most of us. If there is any issue as to how to achieve this, our group can offer suggestions as we are astronomers who use video technology as a primary method in our outreach presentations. I'm sure Dr. Pitts has resources that can do this, too.

What do you think?

Thanks, Tom


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core
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 02/23/08

Loc: Mostly in Norman, OK
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: TOM O]
      #5449522 - 10/01/12 01:29 AM

Well here's an update on the astronomy outreach event in the news; this week the searchlights will be used by Franklin Institute to "point out stellar objects above Philadelphia's Benjamin Franklin Parkway".

One more quote:

"a special interface that will turn the control over to Pitts. This interface will use an iPad to move the lights and accurately pinpoint locations in the sky without the “parallax” line-of-sight problems that are typical of outdoor astronomy events. Planetarium on the Parkway is a free event, and amateur astronomers are welcome to bring their telescopes.

Philadelphia’s Rittenhouse Astronomical Society, one of the nation’s oldest astronomy clubs, will also have two large telescopes on hand for viewers to gaze through."

Maybe there is a method to the madness ... "now ladies and gentlemen, we'll swing the lights over here to Andromeda Galaxy, the furthest object we can see with out own eyes" I do wonder though (seriously) - would something like the Pleiades be visible when pointed out by the lights? - assuming little airborne particulates, etc.


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TOM O
sage
*****

Reged: 03/30/06

Loc: Joshua Tree CA.
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia *DELETED* *DELETED* new [Re: core]
      #5449567 - 10/01/12 02:38 AM

Post deleted by TOM O

Edited by TOM O (10/01/12 02:44 AM)


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TOM O
sage
*****

Reged: 03/30/06

Loc: Joshua Tree CA.
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia *DELETED* new [Re: TOM O]
      #5449576 - 10/01/12 02:59 AM

Post deleted by TOM O

Edited by TOM O (10/01/12 03:04 AM)


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lozanohemmer
member


Reged: 09/27/12

Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: TOM O]
      #5450087 - 10/01/12 12:38 PM

Hi Tom and Peter, thanks for your posts. A couple of notes:

1. We just decided to move the "Planetarium on the Parkway" to Friday Oct 12 because of "cloudy nights" expected this Tuesday and Wednesday. This should give us more time to make plans but also we will be closer to the new moon. I will check on video streaming possibilities.

2. Peter, the idea is to use the searchlights to point at one location and once everyone can see what that location is we will turn the lights off. So yes, provided it is a clear night people should be able to see properly.

3. In case you are curious, we will not really use the searchlights as a laser pointer. Instead, we will criss cross them to form a single apex intersection about a mile high. Derrick Pitts will then move this "target" over the sky. Since the base of the pyramid is so large and all the public will be inside and close to Derrick, the parallax will be severely reduced. I estimate that we can get almost 1,000 looking at the exact same point.

I'm really looking forward to this!

Best,
Rafael


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Kfrank
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/20/08

Loc: Northern Colorado
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: TOM O]
      #5450152 - 10/01/12 01:25 PM

Quote:

It appears this thread has now reached the top ten list for views on this forum..... at least as far as the first ten pages would indicate! So, how significant is "Open Air?"




An excellent question - and one it might be worth pondering.

How this show is perceived will likely be dependent upon those doing the perceiving.

Astronomy/dark sky advocates will likely reject and condemn this show out of hand (as has indeed happened here). This is entirely understandable. For this group, dark skies are important for the pursuit of their avocation - and anything that contributes to less than dark skies, will be poorly received. So for this group, it is indeed significant as it may encourage future things of this nature and seems to put light pollution in a good light.

On the other hand, there's the art community. Much of the "art community" consists of poseurs and those trying to attach themselves to something for the status they seek. Trust me on this. I have been married to a very driven artist for 30 years and have run across a great many such people. There are indeed the knowledgeable and I have no clue how this show would be perceived by them. Art critics will, of course, discuss it using such meaningless terms as "relevant", "evocative" and yes, "banal", designed to cover up the fact that all they are really saying is that they either liked or disliked it. The above mentioned hangers on will then parrot the views of their favorite critic. For the art community, it's significance will largely depend upon how truly knowledgeable about art one is and about its potential influence on future art projects.

Then there's the general public, for whom, bye and large, this exhibit will hold absolutely no interest whatever. For the vast majority of this group this project will be entirely insignificant - particularly since, even if it shows in other cities, only a tiny fraction of the populace will ever see it or even hear about it.

As to my opinion, I wish that we could progress faster in dealing with light pollution and I don't think this kind of thing helps much. As to judging the show on its merits - I suspect that it cannot be fairly done without seeing it in person and therefore unless one has actually seen it judgement (IMO) should be withheld. It's like trying to judge a fireworks show by watching it on line.


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barasits
sage


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Chicago
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: lozanohemmer]
      #5450337 - 10/01/12 03:13 PM

Rafael,

You've stated that Open Air is not the only way to achieve the purposes of social gathering and free speech. This admission doesn't help your case in the light pollution forum. We must then conclude that the 24 searchlight method was selected over alternative designs that didn't involve deliberate light pollution. It was a matter of your choosing.

Previously, I argued that, "As far as free speech is concerned, the light show is superfluous because the sounds or verbal expressions cannot be deduced by viewing the lights." You judged this statement to be incorrect because the sounds/expressions can be heard via speakers, phone app, and on the web. It is precisely because the sounds/expressions can be heard that I described the light show as unnecessary.

I don't doubt that you began with a laudable social purpose in mind, but I'm not so naïve as to believe that concern for social issues was the primary driving force behind Open Air (and, no, I don't expect everyone to be Mother Teresa). Moreover, gathering people together doesn't mean that they will interact with one another unless your design makes it difficult to avoid interaction. A light show has no more power to accomplish this than a movie screening. Consequently, Open Air and the concomitant promotional efforts may cause people to congregate physically but not socially.

If the light show is superfluous vis-à-vis free speech, and if the light show cannot be said to foster interaction across social boundaries, then Open Air remains in the gratuitous entertainment (low purpose) category.

You said that you don't believe that Open Air is violating the rights of those who do not wish to see the sky filled with searchlight beams. I don't know of an instance in which a person or an institution that was depriving people of their rights admitted that they were doing so. Suppose in a deforested public area there remained a single small stand of trees and that a segment of the populace enjoyed looking at them. As part of an art project, you propose to fell some or all of the remaining trees and argue that the rights of those who liked looking at the trees were not violated because there were so few left anyway that it could hardly make a difference. It may not make a difference to you but you can't assume that it makes no difference to others. In the case of Open Air you are further arguing that it is "...completely impossible to see anything in the sky!" If this were so, then how do you explain what Dr. Pitts is proposing to do. After locating the celestial object in the sky using the searchlights, the searchlights would be turned off and people would see the object. How could that be if, as you said, it is completely impossible to see anything in the sky?

Finally, you wrote, "I would be surprised if you can show me a single posting or letter that is disparaging to dark sky activists." Prepare to be surprised. But I will leave that to others if they care to provide examples.

Geoff


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lozanohemmer
member


Reged: 09/27/12

Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: barasits]
      #5450749 - 10/01/12 08:00 PM

I am going to sign off dear Geoff, I don't have so much time on my hands to keep this discussion going and I assume neither do you. My only note is about this small fact you keep forgetting: we are turning off an enormous amount of public lighting. This is how come during the Derrick Pitts event people will actually be able to see the sky. When I say people in Philly can hardly see the sky it is with their normal public lighting ON, i.e. before and after Open Air is being performed. Thanks for your insights anyway.

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core
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 02/23/08

Loc: Mostly in Norman, OK
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: lozanohemmer]
      #5450977 - 10/01/12 10:12 PM

Quote:


2. Peter, the idea is to use the searchlights to point at one location and once everyone can see what that location is we will turn the lights off. So yes, provided it is a clear night people should be able to see properly.





Rafael, thanks much for the details of the plan - that's about what I thot (ie, point it out, then turn off the lights) - although I had my doubts because depending on the type of search light used, (from my limited knowledge) I've had the impression that something like Xenon arc lamps can't be instantly cycles on/off.

On the other hand, if it works out, perhaps it will fire up the thot process of some of the attendees that "hey, I can't see it (the object in question) with the searchlights on, but turn it off and it's there!"


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lozanohemmer
member


Reged: 09/27/12

Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: core]
      #5451116 - 10/01/12 11:33 PM

Thanks for your comment Peter. Indeed our searchlights have xenon arc lamps and so instead of turning them off we use mechanical dousers (they look like venetian blinds controlled by a servo). Derrick can open or close the dousers with a push of a button on an iPad interface we made for him. Can't wait to see it in action!

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barasits
sage


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Chicago
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: lozanohemmer]
      #5451127 - 10/01/12 11:37 PM

Quote:

I am going to sign off dear Geoff, I don't have so much time on my hands to keep this discussion going and I assume neither do you. My only note is about this small fact you keep forgetting: we are turning off an enormous amount of public lighting. This is how come during the Derrick Pitts event people will actually be able to see the sky. When I say people in Philly can hardly see the sky it is with their normal public lighting ON, i.e. before and after Open Air is being performed. Thanks for your insights anyway.




I'm sorry, I was operating under the mistaken impression that the city only allowed parkway lighting to be turned down for the opening night.

We'll just have to agree to disagree about Open Air, but I hope you'll be able to respond to other participants in this forum.

By the way, not that it's any consolation, but I have a high opinion of some of your other interactive works: Bifurcation and Voice Array, for example, are outstanding.

Best regards,

Geoff


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lozanohemmer
member


Reged: 09/27/12

Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: barasits]
      #5451594 - 10/02/12 09:58 AM

Thanks Geoff, glad you like those works!

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TOM O
sage
*****

Reged: 03/30/06

Loc: Joshua Tree CA.
Re: Open Air art project in Philadelphia new [Re: lozanohemmer]
      #5451697 - 10/02/12 11:00 AM

Rafael,
So, what about the webcast idea?
Since this forum has most of those members who have posted comments on other publications, CN would be a good place to let people know if it could happen.
I would like to come and join in just to see it in person, but that's impossible, so a couple of webcams would be great. Especially to watch Dr. Pitts do his presentation.
That would be fantastic!
Thanks, Tom


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