1st Place winner
DESCRIPTIONBeyond their scientific importance, photographs of outer space have a spiritually intoxicating effect on humans. The astrophotographs in Abstracting Eternity aim to capture this feeling by focusing on nebulae and galaxy, the massive clouds of gas and dust in which stars and their galaxies are born. Because nebulae represent the universe in the process of creation, still relatively formless, they lend themselves to a degree of abstraction that appeals to me as an artist. This takes my images a step away from pure science. I never want viewers to forget, though, that the photographs capture the universe as it was billions of light years ago—an eternity that inspires awe, humbles us with our own insignificance, and puts our human troubles in perspective.
During the pandemic, I spent over a year camping around the desert in western Texas and used various equipment, including a telescope and a monochrome camera, to capture all kinds of color and luminance in the universe. This image shows the core of Heart Nebula.
“So when at times the mob is swayed
To carry praise or blame too far,
We may choose something like a star
To stay our minds on and be staid.”
AUTHORNew York-based Chris King left five years of business study to pursue a career in photography and filmmaking. He takes a comprehensive approach to his practice that he finds more fulfilling artistically, working in a range of genres that includes landscape, portraiture, and still life, and is experienced in such technical fields as aerial and architectural photography. His photographs have garnered him numerous international awards, with particular recognition given to his astrophotography. King’s most recent body of work, completed for his Master’s in Digital Photography at New York’s prestigious School of Visual Arts, offers a new perspective on photography’s nude tradition through specialized lighting that brings out the body’s contours and movement. This work will be on display in the fall at Manhattan’s SVA Gramercy Gallery.