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The Windings To and Fro

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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“I know that I am mortal by nature, and ephemeral; but when I trace at my pleasure the windings to and fro of the heavenly bodies I no longer touch the earth with my feet.”

-Ptolemy, Ptolemy’s Almagest

© Lucy Jain, 2014.

While I am a also a fan of work more  scientifically accurate in nature, the imaginative leap of the universe swirling around the viewer’s fixed position in Lucy Jain’s newest painting immediately caught my eye when she posted it on Facebook recently.

Is this a vantage point on Earth, or closer to the center of the Milky Way? Are the branches getting pulled in, or is that an artifact of the viewer’s position? Are we in any real way the center of our own universes? Or we simply caught up in the “windings to and fro” of the universe’s unfolding trajectory?

Soon, students will be able to ponder these and other questions while enjoying this painting: it’s eventual destination is a science classroom at a school for boys where Jain will be working as a science teaching assistant. Bringing the mysteries of the dancing night into the classroom.


Lagoon Nebula 2 © Lucy Jain

You may also enjoy:
Alone in the Blogiverse: Where Are all the Space Art Bloggers? An interview with Jon Lomberg, Lucy Jain and Katy Ann Chalmers.

Glendon Mellow About the Author: Glendon Mellow is a fine artist, illustrator and tattoo designer working in oil and digital media based in Toronto, Canada. He tweets @FlyingTrilobite and is on Instagram. You can see Glendon's work-in-progress at The Flying Trilobite blog and portfolio at Follow on Twitter @symbiartic.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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