• slice


    Micro Museum of Sleep


    we’ve teamed up with our pals at Bompas & Parr to explore the world of dreams for citizenM. one of the world’s smallest museums, this tiny temple (designed by Bompas&Parr) allows guests to peer inside and explore the science of sleep in a series of miniature dioramas we created. working with an astronomer, two artists and a neuroscientist, our contribution to the Micro Museum of Sleep celebrates the science and significance of slumber through a variety of artistic mediums

    the surreal and otherworldly nature of sleep – a period where we mentally enter a personal universe for up to eight hours per day – is the focus of a diorama representing the Mesopotamian God of Dreams created by Olivia Bargman. the diorama is paired with an animation by video artist Alice Dunseath where we see an abstract interpretation of the sights and sounds we experience whilst in a restful dream-like state. a thought-provoking vision of future sleep by astronomer Dr Marek Kukula imagines what a night would be like in zero gravity, and the final video examines the physiology of sleep, as told by neuroscientist Dr Simon Jones, discussing the many theories about how your brain behaves during nocturnal hours

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    Tuesday 13 September 2016

    in September 2006 we published our first zine and began a journey into science and culture. since then we’ve taken creative types to Iceland and Tenerife in search of natural and scientific wonders, explored design vs science, watched the Transit of Venus in Sweden, visited CERN in Switzerland and Super K in Japan, held a conference about greening space exploration, explored the history of space booze in Mexico, published a book about crystals, camped in a concrete utopia in the Arizona desert and partied on an environmental research ship

    plus a bunch of other stuff

    join us next month to celebrate a decade of discerning science with the launch of a retrospective book, ten

    Ace Hotel London
    100 Shoreditch High Street / E1 6JQ
    7-11pm / music from BEAT Magazine’s Hanna Hanra

    is our universe a hologram?

    image by Matthew T. DiVito / http://mrdiv.tumblr.com/

    Tuesday 20 September 2016

    join Dr. Andrew O’Bannon on a journey to the cutting edge of theoretical physics. holography is the bold idea that all the information in our 3D universe may be contained in a mysterious 2D image, like a hologram. promising not only to unite Einstein’s relativity with quantum physics, it also has the potential to provide us with cleaner energy, faster computers, and novel electronics

    Second Home
    68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
    £5 | book here

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    heads up


    the annual Perseid meteor shower peaks this weekend, and this year could see more shooting stars in the sky than usual. we asked Royal Observatory Greenwich astronomer Marek Kukula for the low down

    “like the weather, all meteor showers are a bit unpredictable by nature,” he told us, “but the annual Perseid Shower in August is normally one of the most reliable in terms of putting on a good show. it’s caused by a stream of dust particles left behind by Comet Swift-Tuttle that the Earth ploughs through every August, causing them to burn up high in the atmosphere. normally we just clip the edge of the dust stream but this year we should pass through a denser section – leading to predictions of a more spectacular display than usual. as always, predictions like this need to be taken with a pinch of salt. for a start, the Moon will be up in the evenings this week and its light tends to drown out the fainter meteors. but, even so, if you look up for 15 or 20 minutes on the nights around August 12th you should have a good chance of seeing some bright meteors streaking across the sky – always an amazing sight”

    rooftop astronomy at Ace Hotel

    with the skies getting darker earlier, our ever-popular astronomy nights are back high atop the Ace Hotel London Shoreditch. come take a close up look at the planets, the lunar surface and other wonders through the hotel’s in-house 203mm Dobsonian telescope, customised by super/collider

    the season kicked off on August 9th with a session featuring the Moon, Mars and Saturn overhead. the evening featured astronomer Jeni Millard, art installations from Isobel Church and Dario Villanueva and a talk by Louise Alexander, a planetary scientist from the University of Birkbeck

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    making plastic precious

    Studio Swine

    inspired by nautical craftsmanship and folk art, the designers at Studio Swine went in search of plastic in the ocean for their Gyrecraft project – and found a lot to choose from. sailing 1000 nautical miles from the Azores to the Canary Islands, they passed through through the North Atlantic Gyre: one of five points on the planet where swirling megacurrents concentrate vast quantities of floating debris, including plastic

    “it’s one of the biggest problems facing our civilisation,” says Studio Swine’s Alex Groves, “plastic is in every part of the ocean and the effect it’s having on plankton is only just beginning to be investigated. plankton are the base of the entire planet’s food chain, and they are responsible for producing one third of the oxygen we breath. if we lose plankton we are headed for another mass extinction. in the swirling gyre, most of the plastics have broken down into tiny fragments which are spread over massive stretches of the ocean. due to their size, they are incredibly difficult to recover in any large quantity – making this once disposable material very precious”

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    saved 🌴

    Corinne Staley

    good news on the rainforest front this month, with the Democratic Republic of Congo declaring a vast new national park covering 2.2 million acres of virtually pristine forest that’s home to Bonobos, Okapis, Forest Elephants, Congo Peacocks and a newly discovered monkey, the Lesula

    now, alongside the new Lomami National Park, the Rainforest Trust and local partner the Lukuru Wildlife Research Foundation are looking to safeguard another 1.1 million acres next door by establishing the Balanga Forest Reserve. together, this will form a massive joined up area to help stabilise the region for people and wildlife, safeguard the forest and promote sustainable livelihoods

    super/collider firmly believes that protecting pristine rainforests like those found in the Congo is one of the most effective strategies for protecting biodiversity and mitigating climate change. we will be making a donation and invite you to join us – with an anonymous benefactor matching donations, your donation of just £15 can save 50 acres!

    donate now



    as the nights draw in, join super/collider and guests for a season exploring the dark side…

    Wednesday 3 August 2016

    join Royal Observatory Greenwich astronomer Marek Kukula and curator Melanie Vandenbrouck at Second Home to explore the role of darkness in art and science. blackness can reveal as well as conceal: today’s astronomers seek out the darkest sites on Earth in order to see further into the universe, while the Hubble Space Telescope’s 10-day stare into the darkness in 1995 produced the dazzling vista of the Hubble Deep Field

    from art to astronomy and beyond, Marek and Melanie will trace the changing face of darkness from its traditional use as a symbol of the mysterious and unknown to the modern day quest for ultimate darkness in the form of Surrey NanoSystems’s ultra-dark Vantablack coating

    Second Home
    68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
    £5 / book now

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    2016 Icelandic expedition

    photo by Tom Sewell

    7-12 September 2016

    as late summer lingers over the North Atlantic, join a small group of like-minded creative explorers as we travel across, around and underneath Iceland in search of the Northern Lights and other natural wonders in our most ambitious Icelandic adventure to date

    amid the stark beauty of the country’s surreal landscapes, we’ll spend the dark nights watching for the Aurora Borealis and the days exploring the country’s geological, volcanic and natural diversity. we’ll hike to towering glaciers, visit slumbering volcanoes, watch erupting geysers, relax in natural hot springs, venture behind tumbling waterfalls and descend under the surface of Iceland’s constantly shifting topography

    join the waiting list

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    species of the week


    marine biologists announced the discovery this week of what could be among the oldest living organisms on earth. a massive sea sponge about ‘the size of a minivan’ was photographed last summer over 2km down in the depths of the Papahānaumokuākea marine reserve – a massive protected area the size of Germany located northwest of Hawaii. although not dated yet, it’s the largest specimen yet found. similar, smaller sponges in shallow waters can be over 2000 years old, making this slow-growing deep sea discovery a potential contender

    rock and roll


    just another rock on Mars

    profile: Lightning and Kinglyface

    Lightning + Kinglyface

    Lightning and Kinglyface are Anna Fulmine and Victoria Shahrokh, a team of designers whose work mixes the subtleties of design with scientific principles to create lush, dense and vivid objects, sets and exhibitions. based in Dalston, their work involves collaborations with photographers Thomas Brown and Ryan Hopkinson as well work with clients ranging from Bompas & Parr to Zaha Hadid. our new contributor Bobby Jewell spoke to them to find out more

    so what are your backgrounds and why did you decide to work together?
    we both met during our time at university in Epsom at the Surrey Institute of Art and Design. we were studying graphic design and were becoming increasingly dissatisfied by the work that we were producing. so in a bid to create larger work that was straddling the worlds of art and design we began to look into theatre and set design. at the core of our partnership was this need to make three dimensional, creatively-inspiring, sculptural work. working as a duo helps in this sense because we are both constantly challenging one another and bringing new references to the pot. also it motivates both of us to have another person to answer to and discuss ideas with

    your designs often influenced by science, what is it about these principles or ideas that inspire you?
    there is something about the rigidity of science that guides our creative minds; theories that are set in stone that cannot be argued with, or tampered with. we like the continuity of science, the permanence of it for explaining our intriguing planet and perhaps some of our more philosophical and fantastical ideas. scientific ideas have visually been quite poorly represented for some time, which upsets us because the principles of science are so visual and so exciting and the overly intellectual world of science should be opened up to creative minds

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    Hughes_Untitled, from NEOP, 2015_2

    opening today in Berlin, Aether brings together a number of international artists and photographers inspired by astronomy. curated by super/collider’s Louise Beer and Melanie King, who also heads up the London Alternative Photography Collective, the exhibition showcases various methods of photography; both experimental and direct, real and imagined. we caught up with Melanie to find out more

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    blue flowers


    just in time for Valentine’s Day, our pals at Bompas & Parr have only gone and created the world’s first colour changing flowers. hand painted with a thermochromatic ink, the roses, anemones, lilies and orchids shimmer as you (and/or your lover) exhale on them due to fluctuations in temperature. the flowers come in two forms: one is based on a liquid crystal dye process that changes at 27°C from a deep satin black to Champagne bottle green, “exhibiting all the hues regularly seen on the backs of beetles”. the second uses a black thermochromatic dye that transforms at 31°C. the flower is then spritzed a crystal elixir and ignited – revealing the various pigments in the heat of the flame

    you can take a closer look at these wonders of botanical chemistry today and all this weekend in a series of hands-on workshops at the Edition Hotel in London

    waves ⚫️⚫️〰〰〰〰〰


    researchers working on the LIGO experiment in America are due to make a historic announcement at 15:30 GMT today that we expect will be confirmation they’ve detected gravitational waves

    operating since 2002 but recently upgraded, the facility consists of two separate L-Shaped laser observatories which measure the ultra-tiny distortions caused by passing gravitational waves. we should be able to detect these ‘ripples in space time’ when they emanate from massive objects like orbiting neutron stars and black holes, but they’ve never been seen before now. if LIGO has detected them, it would mark the first direct observation of a phenomenon first posited by Einstein exactly 100 years ago, opening up a new chapter in physics and a whole new way of observing the universe

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    profile: Liliane Lijn

    Crystal Clusters Rhomboid, 1972, Liliane Lijn

    TATE Modern and the Institute of Physics recently got together to curate a series of events entitled Light and Dark Matters, which saw leading artists and scientists, philosophers and theorists debating our contemporary experience of light, darkness and dark matter

    Liliane Lijn was in conversation with mathematical physicist Robbert Dijkgraaf and Professor Sean Cubitt, in a talk which examined the transformative and unifying qualities of light in both art and science. Lijn is an American-born artist who has been exploring the phenomena of light in her work since the 1960s. she is well known for pioneering the interaction of art, science and technology. we caught up with Lijn at her London-based studio, to find out more about the use of light in her practice…

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    with Virgin Galactic and Y-3 collaborating on a new range of flightsuits and apparel, we take a closer look at the high-tech material inside…

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    overwatch 🔭


    for the first time, NASA has consolidated all of its planetary impact detection projects into a single organisation to help keep us safe from asteroids and comets: the Planetary Defense Coordination Office. beyond liasing with various ground and space-based systems, like the Arecibo Radio Telescope and the Panoramic Survey Telescope & Rapid Response System shown above, the new office will oversee asteroid deflection missions and provide input to agencies like FEMA to prepare an emergency response to predicted impacts. with more than 90% of Near Earth Objects bigger than 1km across already discovered, NASA is now focused on finding objects that are slightly bigger than a football field – 140m or larger

    related: Death From Above / Adventures in the Asteroid Field / Arecibo

    Jochen Lempert at Between Bridges


    a trained biologist, Hamburg-based Jochen Lempert began taking photographs in the early 1990s and has since embarked on “an ongoing project that deals with the perception of nature and creatures within the blurry contexts of scientific research, subjective perception and man-made environments: from an analogy between the glossiness of the berries of the Deadly Nightshade plant and the eye of a squirrel, to the visualisation of his own breath by way of long exposures of small segments of night sky”

    his work is currently on show at Wolfgang Tillmans’ Berlin gallery, Between Bridges

    profile: Katie Paterson

    100 Billion Suns by Katie Paterson

    Tate Modern and the Institute of Physics recently got together to curate a series of events entitled Light and Dark Matters, which saw leading artists and scientists, philosophers and theorists debating our contemporary experience of light, darkness and dark matter

    at the event, we caught up with Katie Paterson, a Berlin-based visual artist working at the intersection of art and science. Katie was part of the discussion “Are we darkened by light?” – which examined the effects of light pollution on our experience of the night sky

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    Women of Rock


    25 September – 30 October 2015

    private view 24 September
    Print House Gallery 18 Ashwin Street, London, E8 3DL

    science in general and geology in particular have long been dominated by the male gender. some
    modern day geologists have adopted an Indiana Jones Type A personality, lending their expertise to oil companies and mining concerns; venturing to the far reaches of the planet in a machismo race for resources. at the other extreme, the stereotype of the geeky mineral collector is inevitably male – yet over the past few years a distinctly female fascination with geology, minerals and meteorites has emerged. in this mixed media group show, creative science agency super/collider showcases some of the beguiling results

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    print by Ryan Thompson from the series Dark Flight
    archival pigment on acid free cotton rag paper
    406mm x 508mm
    edition of 100

    within one of the most well-known collections of meteorites in the world, at the Center for Meteorite Studies at Arizona State University, there is an uncatalogued collection of rocks of mistaken identity. once identified by professional and amateur meteorite hunters as meteorites, these specimens were later proven to have terrestrial origins. Meteorwrongs is an original photo print featuring 21 of these false positives. they range in size from just a few inches to more than one foot in diameter and they all have one thing in common – they are not meteorites. the collection stands as a testament to the evolution of the science of meteoritics and to the limits of human knowledge

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    print by John Hooper
    25x20inch C-type Fujicolor Crystal Archive paper
    edition of 12

    as part of our ISLAND/UNIVERSE project, super/collider invited photographer John Hooper and filmmaker Mike Moloney to visit La Palma in the Canary Islands to capture the unique and otherworldly setting of the European Northern Observatory. high amid the clouds and silence at the top of the volcano that dominates the landscape, they photographed windswept rocks, misty forests, sun-bleached tarmac and advanced telescopes – an island at the edge of the universe

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    15 photos that show nature recolonising Chernobyl 🌿

    a new study from researchers at the University of Portsmouth shows that wildlife is alive and well in the abandoned areas around Chernobyl, scene of the catastrophic nuclear meltdown in 1986 that left the landscape largely uninhabitable for humans

    “There is continuing scientific and public debate surrounding the fate of wildlife that remained in the abandoned area,” explain the study’s authors. “Our long-term empirical data showed no evidence of a negative influence of radiation on mammal abundance. Relative abundances of elk, roe deer, red deer and wild boar within the Chernobyl exclusion zone are similar to those in four (uncontaminated) nature reserves in the region and wolf abundance is more than 7 times higher. These results demonstrate for the first time that, regardless of potential radiation effects on individual animals, the Chernobyl exclusion zone supports an abundant mammal community after nearly three decades of chronic radiation exposures”

    when we traveled to the region in 2011 with Unknown Fields, we were struck by just how abundant nature is in former towns like Prypiat, where most of these photos were taken

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    deep impact

    Meteor Crater by Joe King

    drive out along Route 66 east of Flagstaff in Arizona and the familiar icons of the American roadscape soon materialise out of the shimmering desert heat. truckstops, casinos and RV parks mark your progress through the flat landscape at regular intervals, oversized retro diner signs compete with billboards for your attention and wondrous attractions, you’re promised, are never far ahead. among these is Meteor Crater, which features a rad 80s logo and its own radio station playing an endlessly repeating promotional loop as you get closer…

    visit Meteor Crater with us in our latest Where On Earth column for AnOther

    gallery: NASA’s forgotten Space Shuttle

    long before America’s high-tech space shuttles were lofting astronauts and cargo into orbit and gliding back to Earth, a decidedly more basic version was forging a lonely path to space. lovingly handcrafted by engineers from NASA Test Shop 4650, this often overlooked piece of space history was cobbled together from steel beams, spare engine mounts, wood and aluminium. hand painted in a sparse all-white livery, OV-098 (as it was designated) was like a real-life Playmobil playset

    read the full story in our first feature for It’s Nice That or check out this beautiful ‘spacecraft’ in photos below

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    a sartorial history of the spacesuit

    THOM BROWNE SS2011 MEN PARIS 06/27/10

    Friday 4 September 2015

    one of the most advanced fashion accessories ever created, the spacesuit serves as a miniature spaceship to keep astronauts alive in the cold, hostile vacuum of space. since the 1950s, this space age icon has also influenced fashion designers here on Earth. at this unique and intimate event, space expert Dallas Campbell will explore the history of the spacesuit beyond our atmosphere while fashion journalist Daryoush Haj-Najafi will examine its influence on designers from Pierre Cardin to Thom Browne back here on our home planet. there will also be an opportunity to view an actual spacesuit up close that has survived a trip to space

    Second Home
    68 Hanbury Street, London E1 5JL

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    guest post: Planet Labs

    Mojave solar plant

    in the second in a series of guest posts, the people over at Planet Labs share their favourite images of the Earth from above. fittingly for the week that saw a massive announcement on US emissions, this image shows the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System in the Mojave Desert of California. instead of using solar cells to directly convert sunlight into electricity, it uses thousands of mirrors to focus sunlight onto a boiler 459 feet above the desert floor. the resulting superheated steam drives conventional turbines to create electricity

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    sample of the week: quartz arenite

    Cerro Sarisariñama

    quartz arenites are the most ancient exposed sedimentary rocks on earth. a type of sandstone, they’re incredibly hard, and form the basis of South America’s incredible ‘tepui’ mountains – vast flat-topped table formations that rise above the forests and clouds of the northern Amazon. over the eons the relentless action of water has hollowed out four giant sinkholes on the Cerro Sarisariñama plateau in Venezuela. measuring more than 350m across and 300m deep, these circular voids in the forest contain their own miniature jungles – tiny worlds within worlds

    read more about Cerro Sarisariñama in our latest column for AnOther



    every hour of every day, a growing armada of earth observation satellites are peering down on our planet, gathering petabytes of images and data about our changing world. a new online course from the Open University’s super slick Future Learn site lets you take a more detailed look at these incredible spacecraft, and explore how the information they collect is used. it’s free and the first online course from the European Space Agency, so sign up if (like us) you’re interested in how space technology can help save the planet. we’ll see you in class

    profile: Caroline Corbasson

    Caroline Corbasson

    for cultural science nerds such as ourselves and presumably you, a first visit to French artist Caroline Corbasson’s website will likely be one of those OMG-total-freak-out moments where you just want to buy everything. from earlier works on solar flares and meteor impacts to more recent pieces involving mapping, sculpture and signalling, her work spans geology, geometry, geography, space, storms and more. ahead of her upcoming appearance in BREESE LITTLE’s dark frame / deep field show, we caught up with Corbasson to chat science, dream destinations and pyrite

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    the floating world


    located in China’s Hunan province, Zhangjiajie’s incredible landscape began to form over 60 million years ago, when warm tropical seas covered the land. in deeper waters, the accumulation of marine organisms formed limestone while in shallower regions hard quartz sandstone predominated. the seas slowly receded and eons of rains and rivers wore away at the softer stone. small outcrops began to appear; craggy and covered by trees. the action of their roots and the constant freezing and melting of ice as winters passed inexorably carved the towering pillars, which aren’t smooth and eroded but angular and rough. today, there are over 3000 individual towers – some rising a thousand feet into the sky

    read more about Zhangjiajie in our Where On Earth column for AnOther

    mirror mirror

    Observation 123

    ahead of the forthcoming dark frame / deep field exhibition at BREESE LITTLE, we’re previewing a number of artists featured in the show. Sophy Rickett’s Objects in the Field (2013) and the Observation series (1991/2013) are the result of a collaboration with Dr Roderick Willstrop from the Institute of Astronomy at the University of Cambridge. Rickett’s works (which employ unseen test shots from when everything was still done on film) juxtapose deep time with history on a human scale by resurrecting these astronomical photographs. although they are only a few decades old, they are already technologically obsolete, making Rickett’s work analogous to the archaeology of astronomy itself

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    dark frame / deep field

    Blackout Dan Holdsworth

    with NASA’s New Horizons probe rapidly closing in on Pluto and a steady stream of new telescopes coming online, this summer marks a good time to reflect on our own ever-expanding horizons and how artists respond to them. a new exhibition at London gallery BREESE LITTLE will explore this idea with a series of works by Caroline Corbasson, Dan Holdsworth, Philippe Pleasants, Sophy Rickett and We Colonised the Moon alongside a selection of vintage NASA photographs

    curated by astronomer Marek Kukula and art historian Melanie Vandenbrouck, the show highlights how artists are constantly reacting to and reflecting the limits of our ability to image, map and define the universe. as the curators explain, “with telescopes and spacecraft sending back images which are arguably just as powerful in their aesthetic impact as in their scientific content, it is perhaps artists who are best equipped to interpret what these dispatches tell us about humanity’s relationship to a cosmos in which we seem ever smaller and less significant”

    + + +

    super/collider is a media partner for the exhibition, and will be presenting a special evening on Wednesday 15 July. other dates include:

    private view Wednesday 3 June, 6-9 pm
    curator-led tour Thursday 18 June, 7pm
    gallery summer party Thursday 23 July, 6-9 pm



    review: Voyager – The Grand Tour


    Martin Eberle’s Voyager – The Grand Tour, published in an edition of just 300 by Berlin-based Drittel Books, is, as the press release humbly states ‘a new publication about the NASA Voyager mission’. comprising three cloth-bound volumes within a slipcase bearing a silhouette of the mission’s famous Golden Record, it seems more fitting to describe it as an exhaustively detailed chronicle of an endeavour as complicated and contradictory in its planning as it was audacious and astounding in its (on-going) execution

    so cemented is the Carl Sagan-ized version of the story in public consciousness that, as Eberle demonstrates, it’s easy to forget that when the mission was first conceived, a human-launched object had only just made it as far as Mars: the Mariner 4 flyby in 1965

    in fact, for VGR77-2, VGR77-3 (the ‘real’ names of Voyager 1 and Voyager 2) and VGR77-1 (the baby sister that stayed at home at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory), the narrative of a solar-system conquering, intergalactic ambassador of human achievement came later. against the socio-political context of 1970s America it took some convincing to get the project off the ground

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    sample of the week


    our featured sample this week can be found in abundance at Pamukkale in Turkey, where it flows from hot springs to cover the landscape. precipitating from the calcite-rich rich waters when they become exposed to the atmosphere, calcium carbonate forms a type of limestone called travertine. over the eons, it has built a series of cascading cliffs and pools – used since ancient times for bathing and healing

    read more about Pamukkale in our latest column for AnOther

    fire & ice


    the Calbuco volcano in Chile was a booming explosion which hit international news a few weeks back; footage of ash-laden streets and boiling pink clouds putting its power back on the map after decades of inactivity. volcanic eruptions aren’t quite as rare as they seem – at any time there are likely to be about twenty volcanoes erupting around the world – but not all are as cinematic. scientists think that three quarters of all eruptions happen under the ocean, along the mid-Atlantic ridge, as the dark sea-floor tip-toes apart

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    Champagne Supernova


    Tuesday 26 May 2015

    the first in a new series of events we’re curating at Second Home in London, Champagne Supernova will combine two nice things: science and champagne

    first up, Dr Andrew Gregory will tell us about the 1054 supernova which was observed and recorded by Chinese astronomers and by other cultures around the world. his talk investigates the recording of the 1054 supernova and the cultural importance it had in the societies that recorded it and explores why this phenomenon went virtually unrecorded in the West

    next, we’ll hear from Dr Steve Fossey, an astronomer based at UCL’s teaching observatory in NW London. in January 2014, during a routine telescope demonstration, Steve and his students were astonished to serendipitously discover a bright supernova – the closest in a generation – in the nearby galaxy known as Messier 82 aka the ‘Cigar Galaxy’. Steve will tell the story of that night and its aftermath: the race to report, and recent results that promise fresh insight into the nature of these cosmologically significant stellar explosions

    at some point, there will be champagne

    and it’s free – just RSVP

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    Platular ring by Noemi Klein

    Platular ring by Noemi Klein

    inspired by the intersection of earthly geology and crystalline geometry, Noemi Klein crafts intricate pieces in a range of fine metals. in her Epoch 5 collection, geological structures in the form of precious mineral clusters crystallise the natural environment and provide a sharp physical alternative to the ethereal and sensory world of the eye

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    Bad Luck, Hot Rocks


    edited by Ryan Thompson and Phil Orr
    144 pages / 7.5 x 10.5 in. / paperback
    140 colour photographs

    the Petrified Forest National Park in Northeast Arizona protects one of the largest deposits of petrified wood in the world. despite stern warnings, visitors remove several tons of it from the park each year, often returning the rocks by mail (sometimes years later), accompanied by a “conscience letter” which often includes stories of misfortune attributed directly to their theft: car troubles, cats with cancer, deaths of family members, etc

    some writers hope that by returning these stolen rocks, good fortune will return to their lives, while others simply apologize or ask forgiveness. Bad Luck, Hot Rocks documents this ongoing phenomenon, combining a series of original photographs of these otherworldly “bad luck rocks” with facsimiles of intimate, oddly entertaining letters from the park’s archives

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    NGC 1999

    all this week, the world will be marking the 25th anniversary of the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope, an orbiting instrument that has fundamentally changed the way we see our universe. for those of us who came of age after it was launched, it’s hard to remember a time before we could peer deep into the heart of glowing gas clouds like this one, watch asteroids plow into planets, trace lightyears across structures like the famous Pillars of Creation and gaze back to nearly the beginning of time

    beyond curating visuals for a party in New York on Friday, we’ll be posting lots on social media using the hashtag #hubbleweek

    another planet

    Photo by Klaus Thymann

    it’s early days, but in our new column for AnOther we’ll be exploring the geological and scientifical wonders of the world – from pink waterfalls and blue sinkholes to remote telescopes and mysterious markings in the landscape

    film: minerals

    to conclude Crystals and Minerals Month, super/collider is proud to present a new short film by long term collaborator John Hooper. inspired in part by William Klein’s Broadway by Light and Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Inferno, Minerals takes a close up look at some of the specimens from the Mindat collection, revealing their microscopic structures in macroscopic detail

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    Mirror Mountain

    Mirror Mountain by Cat Stevens and Noemi Klein

    as our Crystals and Mineral Month special draws to a close, super/collider is proud to present an exclusive collaboration between designer Noemi Klein and photographer Cat Stevens: an ethereal dream unfolding high atop the world, in the windswept silence that lies beyond the afterfuture. a vision at the intersection of earthly geology and crystalline geometry, earth and sky…

    view this exclusive photo story

    guest post: Mineralia

    Azurite with Malachite

    starting with this beautiful example of azurite and malachite getting it on, the ever-awesome Emily Walsh of Mineralia shares her top five green minerals

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    sample of the week: “Kryptonite”


    this week’s #CrystalsandMineralsMonth sample comes courtesy of Amy Freeborn, an in-house writer at the Natural History Museum who’s awesome job it is to tell the stories behind the museum’s collection. just one example is the innocuous-looking sample shown: a piece of jadarite discovered in Serbia in 2006. a white-ish mineral composed of sodium, lithium, boron silicate and hydroxide – pretty standard, right? except that when NHM mineral expert Dr Chris Stanley found the specimen’s make-up didn’t match anything else known to science, he looked up the mineral’s combination of chemical elements and made a strange discovery

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    guest post: Fred Butler


    Fred Butler is a multicoloured ball of energy who divides her time between accessories design, blogging, music and running. the latter has led her to a place in the London Marathon to raise money for The Music Circle and its protection projects for women in the Democratic Republic Of The Congo. along with her physical training, Fred is creating a visual diary of the colours of the DRC including a section on minerals curated in her typical rainbow style

    all this month, we’ve been celebrating the beauty of crystals, but as Fred reminds us, minerals have a darker side too. in this guest post, she writes about the conflicts caused by our hunger for the Congo’s vast mineral wealth

    you can see more of Fred’s work on her website and support her campaign here

    read more

    briefing: the LHC restart


    in the coming days, the massive underground donut known as the Large Hadron Collider will once again see protons travelling at phenomenal speeds towards each other. following a two year shutdown and massive upgrade, the LHC will be switched back on at almost double its previous power: an incredible 13 trillion electron volts. the cooling of the mammoth machine has already begun – the loop must be chilled to -271.3°C in order for the superconducting magnets to effectively focus the beams of particles on their path around the circular tunnel

    the previous run of collisions at the LHC confirmed the existence of Higgs boson. now, as energies rise, physicists will be able to explore the more unexpected and unpredictable realms of the physical world. one theory scientists are keen to probe is that of supersymmetry, which predicts that a superpartner (or ‘sparticle’) exists for each particle in the Standard Model

    read more

    sample of the week: pyrite cubes


    the mineral pyrite can be found in a variety of crystal forms, but none is as surreal and beautiful as these perfect, naturally-occurring cubes. found outside the town of Navajún in the Rioja region of Spain, the cuboid crystals are prized around the world by collectors for their incredible geometry – with single cubes ranging in size from 1mm to 20cm plus all kinds of combinations, variations and offset angles

    profile: Carly Waito

    'Vesuvianite' by Carly Waito

    at first glance, Canadian artist Carly Waito’s work appears to consist of beautifully-composed photographs of crystals and minerals. closer inspection, however, reveals that these are meticulous oil paintings – each hyperrealistically capturing the beauty of the specimen while at the same time adding another dimension of artistry in the tiny details that mark these out as lovingly hand painted works. we caught up with Carly to find out more about her incredible work and chat about our mutual love of minerals

    read more

    crystals and minerals month

    we’re making March ‘Crystals and Minerals Month’ month here on super/collider – celebrating all things angular and atomically ordered. we’ll be running guest posts, interviews and giveaways on the site, plus on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook (take your pick) we’ll be presenting our pics from a visit to Mindat founder Jolyon Ralph’s mega collection

    species of the week: Urtica dioica

    Urtica dioica

    just coming into season in the UK, stinging nettles (Urtica dioica) are basically free superfood. packing in iron, omega-3, protein, potassium, manganese and calcium, plus vitamins A, C and K, they can be cooked like spinach or made into tea. both methods eliminates the stingy bit, which is caused by fine hairs called trichomes which contain a mix of stingy chemicals

    to harvest, obs wear gloves and go for the youngest, freshest looking leaves. make sure you do this in the coming months, before they flower (as shown above) since after this nettles develop gritty particles which aren’t safe to eat. ensure you pick them from places that for sure haven’t been sprayed with chemicals and as with all wild foods only take what you need and make sure you know what you’re doing. happy hunting!

    designs of the year


    London’s Design Museum have revealed this year’s contenders for their annual Designs of the Year exhibition, opening next month. here are our top science(ish) picks…

    read more

    essay: New Horizons / Neue Welt

    Hubble Deep Field

    in the first of a new series of longer-form articles and essays, Fiona Shipwright considers the anticipated images from NASA’s New Horizons probe in the context of our ever-expanding ‘technological possibilities’ and how such imagery has influenced artists ranging from Gaspard-Félix Tournachon to Wolfgang Tillmans

    read more

    profile: Tim Stoelting

    Tim Stoelting in his studio

    working at the busy intersection of art, design and narrative, artist Tim Stoelting explores concepts and materials by creating art ‘systems’ – rich playgrounds for ideas in which to work. one such project sees the 27-year-old Winsconsonite acting as NASA’s artist-in-residence: a programme long since cancelled by a sceptical US Congress

    read more



    we rarely/never cover ‘tech’ here at super/collider, but we’ll make an exception for Lapka’s early design mock-up for Project Ara because it’s so damn beautiful – and has ‘science’ inside. mixing and matching the San Francisco company’s existing medical and environmental monitors in a series of detachable nodes, the concept would transform the modular smartphone into a versatile monitoring tool depending on your needs

    more images

    Laser Quest party pics

    Photo by Amelia Karlsen

    super/collider kicked off 2015 with a massively sold out celebration of lasers at the Ace Hotel, packing in three top laser plasma physicists, psychedelic tea from Bompas & Parr and music from To The Lazer Cave. photographers Amelia Karlsen and John Hooper captured all the action from our most epic-est night yet. take a look or head over to our Facebook to tag your friends, like yourself etc

    read more


    Gerhardt® STL56 Warm Air Glassware Dryer

    find the Gerhardt® STL56 Warm Air Glassware Dryer and other awesome science stuff we ♡ over on AnOther Loves

    profile: Alice Dunseath


    artist Alice Dunseath creates incredible stop-motion animations that visualise space, stars and the universe. here, she shares her thoughts on crystals, science and the creative process

    I love crystals – the way they grow and form and suggest life but aren’t technically alive. they are beautiful and unpredictable to work with and they grow well in plaster and colour nicely with inks. it was great to be able to work at Imperial college. I co-directed ‘Where To Go’ with Annlin Chao and we both went and worked in the chemistry labs for some of the shots. it was the summer term so none of the students were around but the lab technician was there to help whenever we needed him. we used a specially adapted microscope which allowed us to attach a digital stills camera to it to shoot high-res timelapse footage of crystals forming

    read more


    © STFC

    the light from a single pulse of the world’s most powerful laser is intense enough to heat material to millions of degrees in less than a trillionth of a second. extreme electric fields wrapped up in the laser pulse pull matter into its constituent negative and positive charged parts, forming the 4th state of matter: plasma

    behind the beauty of the burning glow of laser plasma lies a wealth of extraordinary and extreme physics. researchers at the STFC‘s Central Laser Facility outside Oxford are studying this exotic state of matter because it can host a tiny, micro-particle accelerator that gives off beams of X-rays and particles that can be used in medical, manufacturing and security imaging

    studying laser plasma may also help us replicate the fusion reactions that power the sun. used here on Earth, this could provide a limitless source of clean, green energy

    read more

    the floating world


    a gripping week in the far reaches of space is coming to a climax with scientists racing against time to unlock the secrets of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. the drama began on Wednesday when the European Space Agency’s Philae lander separated from the Rosetta probe and began a slow, nerve-wracking descent towards the surface of this lonely, rock-strewn world – which is racing towards the sun at 34,000mph. as the comet’s strange, warbling sounds sparked UFO conspiracy theories, the tiny lander hit the surface, bumped and ended up on its side. with time now running out, mission planners are furiously uploading commands to the distant probe, hoping to squeeze as many experiments as possible

    follow Philae’s final hours

    sample of the week: dinitrogen tetroxide

    ESA image

    this week’s chemical sample hit the headlines today for all the wrong reasons following the massive explosion of an unmanned Antares rocket bound for the International Space Station. first rising, then exploding, falling and exploding again, the giant craft carried the toxic compound amongst others, leading NASA officials to warn the public about approaching the area. used since the early days of rocketry, dinitrogen tetroxide is a powerful oxidizer which reacts on contact with hydrazine in what’s called a hypergolic reaction – making it ideal for launching rockets, but highly hazardous when things go wrong



    the first in a series of commissions for the Ace Hotel, ‘space/station’ posits a future in which humankind will travel to distant galaxies accompanied by lush flora from our home planet. juxtaposing the dense jungles of Earth with the star-filled galaxy NGC 4594, some 28 million light years distant, the installation is designed to transform the lobby of the London institution into a prototype test habitat for future travellers. a series of aquatic life support tanks, inspired in equal measure by science fiction, real-world space station research programmes and Zen garden water features create a living accompaniment to the imagery

    read more



    these sparse, art-like images show the Kholod scramjet – a Russian-built prototype air vehicle that reached Mach 6.47 back in the late 90s – making it the fastest machine to fly within the earth’s atmosphere. part of a joint programme between the Russian Institute for New Propellants (CIAM) and NASA, the Kholod series was carried aloft aboard a modified surface-to-air missile before launching and switching to supercooled liquid hydrogen. one of the systems (complete with missile, engine and display stands) is up for auction this September if you’re looking for a nice loft centrepiece

    read more

    SALT: a northern odyssey

    Sandviksanden 014

    tucked away amid the twisting, endless shorelines of northern Norway, the island of Sandhornøya will be the starting point for SALT – a year-long exploration of art, architecture, food and sustainability high above the world. we caught up with founding curator Helga-Marie Nordby for AnOther

    wild life

    Barn Owl

    combining the intimacy of life drawing with the awesomeness of being in an enclosed space with wild creatures, Wild Life Drawing is the brainchild of visual artist, educator and animal lover Jennie Webber. the debut session later this month sees owls taking centre stage, so we asked Jennie for her five faves – and here they are

    read more

    preview: T-R-E-M-O-R-S


    when we heard ace art/chitecture magazine T-R-E-M-O-R-S had done a space issue, we couldn’t wait to see what they’d covered – so we got in touch. editor Maksymilian Fus Mickiewicz kindly shared an advance proof of the mag, which we’ve chosen some visual highlights from, and his thoughts on ‘why space?’ and ‘why now?’

    read more

    Skyhenges I–IV

    Skyhenge IV

    inspired by the geographical isolation of the tiny island of Inis Oírr and its sweeping views of the horizon, sea and sky, we’ve built a series of ephemeral astronomical installations for Drop Everything – a contemporary cultural biennale that takes place off the west coast of Ireland

    Skyhenges I-IV consists of a number of temporary observing structures dotted around the island, with visitors encouraged to seek them out at specific times during the three-day event, which runs 23-25 May 2014. each piece varies in form, function and construction, but all are sited to highlight a celestial body or event at a specific time

    inspired in equal part by the ancient astronomers who built monolithic observatories and modern artists like James Turrell and Charles Ross, the pieces seek to create a connection between people and sky – one that must be experienced firsthand. free and accessible to all, Skyhenges I-IV is purposefully simple and temporary in nature. created entirely from scavenged and found materials from the island, each will be disassembled and its components returned, recycled or reused after they have served their own, sky-specific purpose

    read more

    guest post: Edgar Martins


    in this exclusive post, photographer Edgar Martins selects his favourite images from, and writes about the inspiration behind, his vast photographic documentary project, which captures the craft, materials and facilities behind the European Space Agency

    read more

    Q&A: Cosima Gretton

    Cosima Gretton

    in this Q&A from the new issue of House, we catch up with AXNS Collective founder (and occasional super/collider contributor) Cosima Gretton ahead of their upcoming event on neuroaesthetics…

    read more

    M Dash Book Fair

    Stour Space Book Fair

    Saturday 3 May 2014

    along with esteemed names like Mack and Book Works, we’ll be bringing some  printed matter down to the M Dash Book Fair at Stour Space this weekend. beyond books from our shop, we’ll also be representing our pals Luminous Books and Loophole Supplements, so pop along if you’re out East

    Stour Space
    7 Roach Road, London, E3 2PA

    weekend art/science round-up


    lots of science-related art opening in the UK this weekend, so let’s dive right in…

    following on from The Arts Catalyst’s successful Republic of the Moon exhibition in London, a new group show curated by Alessandro Vincentelli brings together artists from Pakistan, Croatia and the UK to explore the enduring presence of the moon and the rich iconography of space on the popular imagination of artists. They Used to Call it the Moon at the Baltic Centre’s Newcastle space, Baltic39, features lunar- and space-related film, photography, sculpture and collage alongside a programme of events where scientists, environmentalists, astronomers, artists and writers will share their knowledge and experiences in relation to the future possibilities of the moon. their fieldtrip to the Kielder Observatory on June 14 looks especially tempting

    read more



    combining craft and geology, William Edmonds of Some Wow has created a series of handcrafted ceramic sculptures, each modelled on a real-world volcano. from Mount Pelée in Martinique to Mexico’s mighty Popacatepetl, each one-off sculpture is based on the shape, size and features of the real thing, and comes with a Risographed minibook containing vital stats, science facts and local folklore about the volcano

    first edition currently available exclusively at YCN

    The Space Project

    The Space Project

    Tuesday 15 April 2014

    in 1977, the twin Voyager probes set off for deep space. bearing their famous Golden Records, the two spacecraft not only carried the sounds of earth into the void, but also transmitted the sounds* of space back. now, with the Voyagers leaving our solar system, these otherworldly transmissions have been interwoven into original songs by 14 artists, including Spiritualized, Beach House, Mutual Benefit and Youth Lagoon. in collaboration with Fat Possum and Lefse Records, super/collider presents a voyage through interstellar sound to celebrate the release of The Space Project boxset

    Ace Hotel London Shoreditch
    100 Shoreditch High Street, London E1 6JQ
    see event pics on Facebook

    read more



    a potent mix of science, mythology, sex and nature, artist Camille Henrot’s 13-minute video piece Grosse Fatigue combines eye-popping imagery with an epic spoken soundtrack mixing scientific history, religious Creation narratives and oral folklore drawn from the Dogon, Inuit and Navajo peoples to tell the storyof the creation of the universe. much of the footage was shot as part of Henrot’s Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship, which gave her special access to the Smithsonian Archives of American Art, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. to coincide with her new show at Chisenhale Gallery, Tate Modern will be screening a series of recent work (including Grosse Fatigue) followed by a discussion between the artist and Dan Fox, co-editor of frieze





    it’s a bit battered, but at €80,000 this second-hand Hasselblad 500 EL is a bargain, considering where it’s been and who’s used it. camera number 1038 was one of 15 used on the lunar surface, and the only one to have made it back home – the others having been left behind to save weight

    read more

    deep time


    artist Flora Parrott’s current show at Tintype explores the tactile, sensory experience of entering southern Brazil’s PETAR caves – one of the largest limestone cave concentrations in the world. to complement the mixed-media exhibition, geologist Andrew Hurst will give his response to the work and discuss the parallels between the absolute darkness found in caves and the concept of ‘deep time’ – the realisation that earth’s history stretches back billions of years

    talk takes place 20 March 2014 at 7pm, exhibition runs until 19 April 2014



    lots of gossip flying around the science world today, with talk of a ‘major discovery’ coming out of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics later today. The Guardian kickstarted speculation that researchers working on the BICEP2 telescope in Antarctica have detected evidence of gravitational waves – the final untested prediction of Albert Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity. if true, it would be a ‘major, major, major’ discovery according to UCL cosmologist Hiranya Peiris, and probably win a Nobel Prize

    update: the discovery has now been confirmed, but the news conference livestream is completely overloaded. follow the action on Twitter with #BICEP2

    sample of the week: Ringwoodite


    an ultra-rare mineral discovered inside a diamond suggests there could be vast amounts of water hundreds of miles below the earth’s surface. the sheer volume trapped deep down in the mantle is mind-boggling – possibly as much as all the world’s oceans combined. the accidental discovery was made by researchers at the University of Alberta, who found a tiny sample of water-rich ringwoodite inside a diamond mined in Brazil, which was blasted up from the depths by a diatreme eruption. created only under extreme pressure, it’s the first time the olivine mineral has been found naturally on earth – it’s previously only been seen in meteorites or created artificially in labs

    read more



    we’ve just returned from scouting out locations for our upcoming fieldtrip to Tenerife. expect volcanoes, stars, whales, lava tubes, galaxies, dolphins, planets, sea turtles, BBQs, birdlife, botany and more – details coming real soon

    moons above

    to celebrate the launch of the Open University’s awesome-looking free online course about the many moons in our solar system, we asked course leader David Rothery, Professor of Planetary Geosciences at The Open University, to name his top five solar system moons

    read more

    Growing The Future


    January/February 2014

    as a new year dawns, super/collider will be exploring crystal cities and biological fashion in a series of workshops at Selfridges as part of their upcoming Festival of Imagination – giving you the chance to get hands-on with two forward-thinking approaches to fashion and architecture

    read more

    out of ice


    taking our long-running Sustainable Culture series for AnOther into icy new territory, Abby‘s latest column looks at the work of artist Elizabeth Ogilvie (pictured) whose new Out Of Ice installation is a meditation on “structures born long before our time, that we must ensure last long after we are gone”

    read more

    A Brief History of Drinking in Space


    Sunday 2 February 2014

    to date, there has been relatively little consumption of alcohol in space and on the moon, but that could be set to change. with space tourism taking off, new lunar missions on the horizon and manned expeditions aiming further into space – with all its stresses – could a new era of zero gravity libations be next?

    join Sam Bompas of Bompas & Parr and David Lane of The Gourmand for a speculative look and the past, present and future of alcohol in space. from Buzz Aldrin’s legendary Holy Communion on the moon to sherry experiments aboard Skylab and ceremonial ‘vodka’ consumption aboard the ISS, we’ll discuss the secret history of a slightly tipsy space age and ask what role our favourite poison will play in the future colonisation of the moon

    read more

    profile: Nina Tandon


    launching tonight, the latest issue of Protein®’s superlative journal features a special section on the future of health. ranging from emerging food, wellness and health entrepreneurs to technological breakthroughs set to disrupt medicine, it’s a stylish look at the innovations and innovators transforming how we care for our bodies and minds

    in this exclusive preview, Protein®’s Shepherd Laughlin asks “Are we on the brink of a medical revolution?” and discovers that tissue engineer Nina Tandon’s approach to artificial organ building could change the world

    read more



    featuring work from artists including Katie Paterson and WE COLONISED THE MOON, the The Arts Catalyst‘s Republic of the Moon exhibition combined personal encounters, DIY space plans, imaginary expeditions and new myths for the next space age

    bringing a pop cultural take to the proceedings, super/collider curated 
POP ROCK MOON SHOP® – a pop-up store inside the exhibition selling all manner of discerning lunar ephemera. ranging from 3D relief maps and rare art books to cosmic fashion, discerning homeware and actual pieces of the moon, it was the ultimate lunar shopping destination here on planet earth

    read more

    higher states


    we’ve all seen a zillion of those drugs and booze under the microscope things and they’re always a bit ‘yeah, yeah, yeah, wow, how edgy’ but Sarah Schoenfeld‘s recent images of drugs on film negatives take things to a whole new level. dropping class As, Bs and Cs onto exposed film to induce chemical reactions, the Berlin-based photographer creates surreal art pieces that reflect the altered states of mind created by (top to bottom) LSD, speed, MDMA, ketamine, heroin, ecstacy

    read more

    nightfall (I)


    timelapse of Venus descending in London’s hazy atmosphere this evening

    Jorge De la Garza

    Jorge De la Garza

    Mexican-born artist Jorge De la Garza’s work is an amalgamation of ethereal terrains, geology, minerals and monotonous domestic interiors. occult practice and mythological are threaded through his work, resulting in a concoction of reality and fantasy; an absurdist universe, simultaneously existing in fictional galaxies and banal, wallpapered rooms. many of his works create juxtapositions between the cold truth of geological stones and minerals and the encroachment of a mythical universe, as they bleed into each other

    read more

    sample of the week: ice cores


    extracted from hundreds or even thousands of metres of accumulated ice and snow, ice cores are a key tool for mapping the earth’s changing climate. the trapped air bubbles, much like the rings of a tree, can be studied to determine the historical atmospheric composition of the planet. the sample above was collected by Dutch scientists from the Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research in Antarctica to assist with their continued research into concentrations of carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide over the past 800,000 years


    just in time for Christmas, a new nova has appeared in the southern skies. Nova Centauri 2013 has already reached magnitude 5.5 for observers in the Southern Hemisphere (ie, not us) and may continue to brighten. if you’re down under, look for it west of Alpha and Beta Centauri

    via Sky & Telescope

    profile: Jessica Herrington


    in the first in a new series of short profiles of people working along the border of science and creativity, we meet crystal cave-maker Jessica Herrington

    Plaster, wire, fibreglass, enamel, glitter
    Private Collection

    read more



    is consciousness an illusion? or a mere epiphenomenon; a byproduct of brain activity? is it even generated by the brain, or is it part of some wider context ‘beyond the individual?’

    whatever the answers, conscious awareness is incredibly empowering. the very ability to experience our own experiences creates a further stimulus, the stimulus of the self in the world for us to respond to. which is exactly what a team of panelists will do tomorrow evening, at a discussion tomorrow night organised by the Society for The Preservation of Wild Culture

    read more

    species of the week: Greta oto


    displaying a rare example of terrestrial translucency, the tissue between the veins of this stunning butterfly is almost clear, leading to its common English alias of ‘glasswing’ or the charming ‘epijiotos’ (little mirrors) in Spanish. native to the neotropical zones of South America and Southern Florida, the males are assumed to be toxic due to their diet of alkaloid-high nectar from flowers such as Asteraceae



    this week the Andromeda Project launch Round 2 of their crowdsourced search for star clusters in our closest neighbouring galaxy, Andromeda (M31). last year saw an incredible 10,000 participants compile over one million classifications in just three weeks. with new data released into the project they’re looking for more citizen scientists to help build the most complete map of any spiral galaxy anywhere

    it’s hoped that the data you collect could determine rare stages of stellar evolution, the structure and evolution of star formation and the way in which the Andromeda Galaxy has changed and evolved over billions of years – and all you need to get involved is an internet connection, a computer and a few minutes of your time read more



    a surreal sight in space, this cloud of luminous debris was captured by astronaut Mike Hopkins as the space station crossed over Iran heading towards Mongolia. according to Universe Today, it was likely the trail of a Topol/SS-25 missile launched from Kazakhstan



    until 16 October, the ever-awesome World Land Trust is focusing its efforts on protecting a key rainforest corridor along the Kinabatangan River in Malaysian Borneo. with each donation matched by wealthy backers, it’s a rare chance to link up fragmented forest habitats used by orang-utans, pigmy elephants and other endangered wildlife. super/collider will be making a contribution and we urge you to consider helping too

    update: as of 5pm on the 16th over £636,054 has been raised, but the donations are still being counted. though the appeal is now over, it’s never too late to donate and help support the trust’s preservation work

    read more


    gareth pugh007

    fashion designer Gareth Pugh’s SS14 collection arrived this week in a temporarily hot, tepid and chlorinated atmosphere created for the occasion inside Paris’ Palais de Tokyo – conditions reminiscent of what we’d find deep beneath Venus’ dense cloud cover. to mark the occasion, Dazed & Confused asked us for a scientific take on the proceedings

    click here to read the piece

    AnOther Magazine: Eileen Collins

    Screen Shot 2013-10-10 at 12.25.05

    earlier this year, we had the privilege of speaking to Eileen Collins – the first female space shuttle pilot – for AnOther

    read more



    with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change releasing the first part of its fifth assessment report today, much of the focus and debate will be on the so-called pause in global temperature rise over the last decade – a worrying trend which has given ammunition to climate change skeptics even as CO2 levels continue to rise, potentially storing up rapid change for the future


    working and living primarily amid the solitude of Scotland’s western islands, artist Julie Brook incorporates land and landscapes into her work – which she describes as both a response to and a reflection of the environment’s effect on her. for her ‘Sand Drawing’s series, she spent four weeks in the volcanic region of Al Haruj in Libya read more

    nature reserves

    Screen Shot 2013-08-22 at 13.56.37

    “Nature is a language, can’t you read?”
    The Smiths, ‘Ask’, 1986

    categorising, labelling, and the violence of human imposition of meaning on the natural world are some of the themes tackled in a conceptually rich exhibition curated by Tom Jeffreys at GV Art. in striving to discover the world around us, the significance of how we give meaning and identity to the knowledge gained is often overlooked. Nature Reserves examines the archive and catalogue, and their implications as human endeavours, through the works of 12 contemporary artists complemented by archival materials from museums and universities

    read more

    summer solstice party


    Thursday 20 June 2013

    as the summer nights stretch out into the small hours, we’ll be teaming up with the mighty solutionvsproblem to host a nite of solstice-fueled disco, space and balearic psych with a bit of neo sci-rave paganism thrown in for good measure

    Ridley Road Market Bar | 49 Ridley Rd | London | E8 2NP



    from the outer rings of Sun Ra’s native Saturn to the depths of Drexciya’s undersea cities, the realms of afrofuturism provide a fertile space for forward-thinking imaginations. The Arts Catalyst’s next Kosmica night, guest curated by Jareh Das, explores the theme with guest artist Kapwani Kiwanga. beyond an amazing looking film/project about repatriating the aforementioned interplanetary jazz god to his home planet, Kiwanga will present AFROGALACTICA, a short history of the future mapping the progress of her imagined United States of Africa Space Agency


    Star Towers: Elysium Planitia

    our new series of collage works feature monolithic structures set amid distant landscapes, connecting various locations around the known universe – in this case Gusev Crater on the edge of Mars’ vast Elysium Planitia with the centre of the Milky Way galaxy via three gateways, each imparting a different arrival velocity



    of all the incredible stuff out there in space, globular clusters are surely among the most mind-blowing when you pause and consider what could be going on deep inside their luminous cores. these vast blobs of light are made of millions of stars, some of which could be the cradle of civilisations, distant in time and space. to make sense of the sheer numbers and possibilities, Dr. Frank Drake devised a famous equation while working as a radio astronomer read more



    there are tons of photos of earth taken from space, but few as good as Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield’s recent series from the International Space Station, where he’s been living since November last year. while up there, he’s been posting photos on Twitter, answering questions from space and recording folky songs that aren’t entirely terrible. this photo from yesterday shows spring around Lake Balaton in Hungary

    sample of the week: Malachite


    used to make green paint in ancient times, Malachite is a rich green copper carbonate hydroxide mineral with the formula Cu2CO3(OH)2. usually found deep underground, where hydrothermal fluids and water reservoirs can create Malachite stalagmites. this particular sample is from Zaire



    with the passing this week of visionary architect Paolo Soleri, I’ve been thinking about the time I spent at Arcosanti – his experimental desert settlement – last November while writing a piece for AnOther. one morning, up early to take photos with the rising sun hitting the concrete, I wandered through the empty city; home to 60 or so people but deserted at that hour, except for a bobcat which padded noiselessly past. inside the silent, sun flooded rooms and offices, Soleri’s visions of soaring arcologies hung on the walls and filled endless, carefully preserved scrolls. in one room, an architectural model of one of his hyperstructures caught the sunlight, its monumental scale lit up over the miniature landscape

    read more



    from exquisite gemstones and the rings of Saturn to stripey tights and eye-popping prints, Patternity‘s first festival of pattern explores the enduring magnetism of stripes in all their forms. the jam-packed events programme includes workshops ranging from t-shirt printing to neuroscience, all investigating an aspect of this particular pattern

    we’ve made a short film about stripes in space which will be screening on Sunday 14 April as part of science day

    tropical ice


    snow and ice may not be features you normally associate with Africa, but high in the Rwenzori Mountains, year-round subzero temperatures keep the top of the continent permanently capped in white. as the highest source of the Nile, the upper reaches of the range are home to about twenty glaciers – a precious treasure located less than a degree north of the equator. we recently caught up with Project Pressure, a not-for-profit which set out to photograph the continent’s hidden icecaps…

    read more



    stretching 3.7 million square kilometres across the Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon and the Central African Republic, the Congo Basin is home to a vast rainforest covering over one and half million square kilometres. it extends from the ice-capped peaks of the Rwenzori range (also known as the ‘Mountains of the Moon’) down into lush lowlands, following the Congo River and its tributaries flowing down towards the Gulf of Guinea. home to thousands of unique animal and plant species, as well as indigenous forest-dwelling people, the region generates its own weather systems and sequesters massive quantities of CO2

    now, like many of the world’s tropical forest areas, the Congo Basin is under threat from a new enemy: palm oil. in addition to logging, poaching and other pressures, the forests now face a rapid expansion of palm oil plantations to help fuel demand for this increasingly lucrative product, which is used in products like cakes, biscuits and chocolate Easter eggs. you can help by avoiding low-scoring products on the Rainforest Foundation’s list of chocolate brands and supporting work like WWF’s long running Congo Basin campaign

    species of the week: Xanthoria parietina


    an uncommonly beautiful example of common orange lichen aka Xanthoria parietina, maritime sunburst lichen or shore lichen. it thrives in sunny hardwood forests and on exposed seacliffs, where bird droppings provide a rich source of nitrogen. incredibly tolerant of air pollution and heavy metal contamination, it can be used as a bioindicator to measure things like air quality

    Material Matters


    housing everything from delicate fulgurite structures created by lightning strikes to an ultra-dense ball of silicon nitride which can dent concrete, the Institute of Making is home to some of the world’s most wondrous substances. tomorrow, after years in an increasingly-crowded university basement, the collection and its curators are moving to a bigger, brighter more public space where you’ll be able to handle samples, experiment with new materials and create stuff in a state-of-the-art workshop read more

    book launch: An Introduction To Isomorphology


    Saturday 23 March 2013

    join us at EB&Flow Gallery for the launch of Gemma Anderson’s An Introduction To Isomorphology – a new way of seeing and classifying the natural world that draws on artistic and scientific practice. Gemma will be in conversation with mathematicians Tom Coates and Dorothy Buck talking about things like the topology of symplectic manifolds and algebraic varieties followed by drinks and the chance to see her ongoing exhibition

    talk starts at 4:30pm | EB&Flow is located at 77 Leonard Street, London, EC2A 4QS

    read more


    located 254 metres above sea level with gas intakes at 116m and 232m above the streets of San Francisco, the Sutro Tower acts as a climate sentinel, stretching up into the atmosphere to measure CO2 levels. the first US sampling site to be located in an urban centre, it’s equipped with automated flask sampling systems that provide daily measurements of a suite of greenhouse gases, carbon isotopes, halocarbons and other compounds. together with other stations, it has witnessed a steady rise in atmospheric CO2 concentrations, with recent figures from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration making for grim reading. there’s a good summary of the new data on The Guardian and a great apocalyptic climate disaster round-up on Motherboard

    the art of Apollo 17

    forty years ago tonight, mankind’s last mission to the moon touched down in the Taurus-Littrow valley, located in the Taurus mountains just east of the Sea of Serenity. for the next three days, commander Eugene Cernan and geologist Harrison Schmitt lived and worked in this most dramatic of Apollo landscapes, collecting a record haul of moon rocks, taking measurements, setting up experiments and taking pictures on a range of cameras. some, like this one showing Schmitt next to big boulder, became well-known while hundreds of others languish in the archives. here is just a small sample…

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    workshop: the monument

    we’re super excited about our first-ever schools workshop, created in collaboration with London Metropolitan University’s Sir John Cass Faculty of Art, Architecture and Design. all next week, students will be designing a physical monument for visitors to experience 1000 years from now. using different materials and restricted only by size (10m x 10m x 10m), they’ll consider what materials will last so long, where to site their structure and how future people will experience and interpret their monument

    see the outcome of this workshop



    techniques and devices used to detect nuclear weapons are being deployed in the search for dark matter – the mysterious material that makes up perhaps 25% of the universe but which we know almost nothing about. located in an abandoned mine nearly a mile underground beneath the Black Hills of South Dakota, the LUX experiment is shielded from cosmic rays by the rock, and immersed in a tank of ultra-pure de-ionized water to keep out stray radiation. beyond observing dark matter particle interactions, which have so far eluded direct detection, the experiment could lead to smaller, more capable devices to search for rogue nuclear material



    the world’s newest, largest and most complicated telescope is now officially open for astronomy. located high in the deserts of Chile, the European Southern Observatory’s Atacama Large Milllimetre/submillimetre Array (ALMA) is made up of a series of interlinked antennas stretching across an ultra-arid plain 5000m above sea level read more

    TARA party!

    Tara Party hosted by super/collider and AnOther

    as part of the TARA’s recent stopover in London, super/collider and AnOther Magazine teamed up to host a little soirée on board the French environmental research ship, which is sponsored by fashion house agnès b

    after some drinks and nibbles, captain Loic Vallette and chief scientist Chris Bowler gave a talk about the vessel’s recent plankton-sampling voyage before leading tours above and below decks. you can read our full piece for AnOther right here and scroll down to see Amelia Karlsen‘s lovely photographs of the evening

    missed the boat? sign up for our mailing list and we’ll keep you posted on future events

    read more


    like dinosaurs? get yourself down to Protein‘s  Hewett Street space for GIF masterminds Reed + Rader‘s first solo show in the UK – ‘Cretaceous Returns’. expect dubstep dinos, prehistoric paper foliage and primitive animation – plus signed Mini Dinosaur sculptures, limited edition video pieces and prints of the Brooklyn-based duo’s prehistoric world for some early Christmas shopping


    on now at London’s Red Gallery, this solo exhibition of works by Worlds in Transit participant Fritz Stolberg comprises two installation works and two new photographic series. as Stolberg explains, the title of the exhibition was taken from Jorge Luis Borges Library of Babel, which describes the universe as an infinite architecture of interlocking hexagonal rooms filled with books that contain every possible combination of 23 alphabetical letters read more


    big news this week from the La Silla Observatory in Chile, which has detected an earth-sized planet in the star system next door, Alpha Centauri. using the HARPS fibre-fed high resolution echelle spectrograph (as you do) the team monitored star Alpha Centauri B over the course of four years, watching for tiny fluctuations that reveal the presence of orbiting bodies. though the planet is far too hot to visit (and not yet 100% confirmed) news of a new world just 4.37 light years away has already got folks discussing the possibility of sending an interstellar probe to the system


    a stylish and understated way of marking Breast Cancer Awareness Month comes courtesy of In God We Trust‘s collaboration with the Keep A Breast Foundation. the upside down heart is hand engraved and strung on an 18″ brass chain, and even comes with a retro pocket guide to boobie health



    we’re not entirely sure what to expect from Cosmicmegabrain‘s group show in London this weekend, but if nothing else Emily Candela‘s krustapseudicals alone should make it worth seeking out. created live on the night, the (theoretically) edible crystals contain vitamins, minerals, proteins (harvested from the artist’s hair) and tiny amounts of skin and dental care products like lip gloss and mouthwash – what Emily calls “basically crystallisations of magazine articles offering beauty advice”

    info on the event here, hat tip to and full interview on Dazed Digital

    Tristram Lansdowne: islands in the sky

    we first came across Canadian artist Tristram Lansdowne when his surreal island paradise graced the opening pages of Landfill Editions’ epic Mould Map project. now we’re wishing we lived in Toronto, as a retrospective of his meticulously hand-painted works opens, showcasing a breathtaking series of imagined worlds. since we don’t, we caught up with him via email to find out more about the natural inspiration behind his paintings
    read more

    radio silence


    couldn’t not post an image from Derek Mead’s photographic tour of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory’s facility in West Virginia: a series of telescopes nestled amid lush forests and hills read more

    science printing workshop

    23 October 2012

    as part of the ün-establishment series we’ll be bringing our new Risograph printer down to the Nicholls & Clarke building in Shoreditch for a Tuesday afternoon of science, art & craft. join our expert teachers Nancy Straughan and Ciara Phelan and learn how to create patterns, prints, collages and illustrated work using science textbooks and imagery as inspiration – then create your own on-the-spot prints


    after a voyage of more than 62,000 nautical miles, the French environmental research vessel TARA will next week dock in London as part of an ongoing educational sailing. we’ll be co-hosting an exclusive evening tour and talk onboard the ship with AnOther Magazine, and there are also a series of other events and an exhibition at the Covent Garden branch of agnès b, who have sponsored the two most recent expeditions: a two-year drift through the Arctic pack ice and a circumnavigation of the globe to study plankton. the following article appears in Issue 23 of AnOther, on newstands now

    read more


    after touching down on the western side of Mars’ Chryse Planitia in 1976, the Viking 1 lander beamed back the first images from the surface of another planet read more

    species of the week

    the Shield mantis is just one of millions of species found in Yasuni National Park, Ecuador – one of the most biodiverse places on earth thanks in part to the fact it never froze over during the last ice age. the rainforested area is home to an incredible array of wildlife ranging from fish and birds to reptiles and amphibians, as well as several uncontacted human tribes

    read more

    Neptune rising

    with the skies darkening and the most distant planet in our solar system shining high in the sky, we thought the next few weeks would be a good time to launch our new Pop-Up Astronomy Club – a series of impromptu events around East London that take place when there’s something good to see and the skies are clear. our first target will be Neptune, which reaches opposition tonight – making it brighter and easier to see. if you’d like to come see it with us in the coming weeks, check out the project page for more

    ps: it will look nothing like this image


    early next Monday morning, 154 million miles from earth, a white and gold UFO-shaped spacecraft will hit the Martian atmosphere traveling at nearly 6km per second. after some hypersonic aeromaneuvering (as you do) NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory will deploy this parachute – the largest ever made to fly on an extraterrestrial flight – and start its treacherous final descent. if all goes to plan, a series of rockets will then fire to slow the craft down, enabling it to lower a 1-ton rover called Curiosity towards the surface. if it makes it, the SUV-sized rover will spend the next Martian year (687 Earth days) exploring the Gale Crater for signs of life

    you can watch the landing, scheduled for 6:31am GMT on Monday August 6, on NASA TV


    the city’s streets can seem like a no-fly zone sometimes, but the air around us is alive with often-unseen fellow urbanites – and this week brings two chances to learn more about species who overfly us daily and nightly. the first is Jeremy Deller’s new collaboration with bat scientist Kate Jones for Invisible Dust: a series of walks around East London’s Greenway to look for (and listen to) bats. then on Thursday lunchtime, The Honey Club will be outlining their plans to create the biggest bee-friendly community in the world in King’s Cross. the event is the first in a summer series at the King’s Cross Filling Station – a new public space and pop-up restaurant which will also see events from Wired, Wallpaper* and something called super/collider


    good news for native wildlife this week with the release of 34 frankly adorable dormice into the Warwickshire countryside as part the PTES National Dormouse Monitoring Programme – the world’s longest running national mammal monitoring project. such reintroductions are only done in areas where historical populations of dormice have become extinct and where the woodland and hedgerows have been managed to encourage native species like this little fella. if you don’t know the People’s Trust for Endangered Species, check out their wildlife encounters programme, where you can go walking with wolves, hedgehog tracking or cruising for basking sharks

    image: British Wildlife Centre

    space camp


    Mars missions have already been simulated in the Canadian Arctic, off the coast of Florida, in the deserts of Utah and most recently inside an Austrian ice cave, but none look as fun as the one currently underway on New York’s Upper East Side read more

    species of the week: Lycoperdon perlatum

    the surface of this mushroom is described, variously, as being covered in warts, spiny bumps, jewels or spikes. early on, when still crisp and white, these mushrooms are edible, with an apparently aromatic taste to them. when older, the matured and now slightly brown-coloured puffball reproduces by opening its upper surface to liberate and disperse spores

    warning: super/collider does not recommend eating wild mushrooms unless you are an expert, as insanely poisonous varieties can resemble edible ones

    species of the week: Cephea cephea

    the jellyfish Cephea cephea is captured here in the mobile stage of its life cycle. the term jellyfish or medusa only refers to the free-swimming members of the greater phylum of Cnideria, whereas when attached to the sea-bed, they are called polyps. instead of tentacles they have eight highly-branched oral arms, along which there are suctorial mini-mouth orifices. Cephea cephea wafts in the tropical water of the Indo-Western Pacific, and is fished for cooking purposes despite consisting of up to 98% water


    photo by Klaus Thymann

    incrementally flowing down into valleys, lakes and oceans, the slow motion march of glaciers has etched the earth’s surface for eons – but today these remote white worlds are under threat. with the puzzling exception of the Karakoram range, the world’s glaciers are retreating at an alarming rate, with geologists predicting that some of Africa’s little-known ones could disappear completely before the decade is out

    created by the accumulation of snow over centuries, glaciers are found on every continent bar Australia. surprisingly, many remain unmapped and unphotographed, which is where Project Pressure comes in. founded in 2008 by lifestyle photographer Klaus Thymann, the not-for-profit initiative is slowly creating an archive of glacier photography which will form the basis of a touring exhibition and global glacier atlas. working in collaboration with the World Glacier Monitoring Service and NASA, the project carefully records GPS co-ordinates to compare glacial retreat, and has been recognised as an official contributor to the Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers

    read more



    of all the lovely stuff on show at Pick Me Up to choose from, we’re totally loving the cosmic back-story behind Miles Donovan’s Ulysses collages. inspired by the NASA space probe and its Jupiter-assisted plane change and subsequent trans-solar adventures, the series presents an alternate take on the spacecraft’s wandering journey around the Jovian system, past Comet Hyakutale and out into the unknown

    read more

    mars / nudes

    we don’t often show nipples on super/collider, but it’s not often that an internationally-renowned artist simultaneously exhibits two shows based on photographs of porn stars and the surface of Mars read more

    guest post: dispatches from paradise

    for the past three weeks, twelve scientists and supporting team members have been recording, logging and observing sea life in the Chagos Archipelago as part of the first full scientific expedition since the area was declared a no-take marine protected zone in April 2010. in this special guest blog from the middle of the Indian Ocean, the team investigate the Salomons Atoll…

    read more


    this weekend’s Oxford Mineral Fossil Show will be preceded by a special meeting co-organized by the Russell Society, the Mineralogical Society and Gem-A (the Gemmological Association of Great Britain). entitled Nature’s Treasures, the day will see talks ranging from “Re-creating 3D models of fossils” to “Minerals at the Nano-Scale: Exploring our Crystalline World” read more


    when seen side by side with, say, the planet Venus, our sun looks pretty huge – but lurking out beyond our solar system are millions upon millions of much bigger stars read more


    a rare meteorite sample that could help unravel the mysteries of Mars has been acquired by the Natural History Museum in London. the space rock is about the size of a paperback book and is the largest known fragment of the Tissint meteorite, which fell as a shower of stones in the deserts of southern Morocco last July. eyewitnesses heard two sonic booms and saw a bright fireball trace through the night sky

    read more

    the plant journal

    if the lush images, elegant illustrations and handy potting ideas from Issue 1 are anything to go by, tonight’s launch of The Plant Journal number two should be a cause of celebration. essentially plant porn, each lovingly-crafted issue is dedicated to a particular species – in this case one of our personal favourites: Monstera Deliciosa read more

    star power

    in the middle of the night, as the rest of America sleeps, a small group of physicists in California stand in a hushed control room. the clock steadily counts down towards zero and then, in a fraction of a second, everything happens at once

    read more

    death from above

    to mark the first month of the Mayan year of doom, super/collider will be publishing stories about and predictions for 2012 throughout January. we start with a look at one man’s efforts to save the world from cataclysm via a DIY asteroid observatory in rural Wales, originally published in Dazed & Confused

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    twice in a lifetime

    artwork by Wolfgang Tillmans

    pay attention folks – this is the most important heads-up we can give you for the next 105 years. this June, the planet Venus will be visible as it passes in front of the sun for the second – and last – time in our lives

    the first transit of our era took place in 2004, but thanks to the way the planets turn the next one won’t take place until 2117. watching a small disc pass in front of the sun may not sound all that thrilling, but seeing this rarest of cosmic alignments unfold gives you a true sense of our place in space. indeed, it was from observations 17th and 18th century transits that we first able to measure the distance between the earth and the sun, and modern observations have helped researchers learn more about how to detect exoplanets orbiting distant stars

    Turner Prize-winning artist Wolfgang Tillmans captured seven images of the 2004 transit of Venus, one of which formed the cover of his book Truth Study Center – recently re-released by Taschen as part of a three volume boxset. writing recently in The Guardian, Tillmans called it his favourite shot, and recalled that “observing the 2004 transit through my telescope, which I still have from my astronomy-obsessed teenage days, had no scientific value, but it was moving to see the mechanics of the sky”

    read more


    with Dawn’s adventures in the asteroid field entering month five, amazing images and videos continue to arrive from deep space. first it was a close up view of Vesta, then a 3D tour of the asteroid, and now NASA have released these beautiful images of rocks from Vesta – found right here on earth

    read more


    despite the failure of Russia’s ambitious Phobos sample return mission, the next chapter in our exploration of Mars began over the weekend with the launch of NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory read more


    on Friday and Saturday, we’ll be covering a new Intelligence² conference dedicated to all things futuristic – from extreme architecture and endless cities to longevity research and life in outer space. alongside the usual more tech- and business-oriented stuff, the iq² If Conference has packed in a lot of science, including Hugh Broughton Architects’ spacecraft-like pods for the British Antarctic Survey read more

    another earth

    super/collider’s own John Hooper was involved in the making of this amazing promo for Another Earth, which tells the story of a second planet approaching ours. filmed at a school in West London, it shows the textbooks literally being re-written as a solar system forms inside the school and the earth’s climate changes. to make the video, John shot still images of the backgrounds, which were then animated by director Rupert Cresswell of Glint

    read more

    profile: Julie Peasley

    the world of particle physics is full of huge detectors and complicated machines searching for unimaginably small particles. the Particle Zoo – in contrast – is a colourful little workshop in LA created and run by self-taught physicist Julie Peasley. visiting the studio is like entering a subatomic world of stitching, sewing machines, buttons, zips, multi-coloured felts – and a few cats to keep Schrödinger happy. her immaculately-ordered shelves echo the grid-like standard model structure, with ‘boson eyes’ at one end, ‘beta decay zippers’ at the other. even every thread colour is ‘charm’ or ‘strange’, ‘truth’ or ‘beauty’

    read more

    AnOther Magazine: Sylvia Earle


    Few people on earth can tell the kind of stories that Sylvia Earle can. We’re huddled around a speaker phone, leaning forward intently as the legendary oceanographer recounts one of the most memorable moments of her long career. The year was 1979, and Earle was about to embark on the deepest undersea walk ever attempted. At a depth of 381 metres beneath the surface, she stepped off the edge of a submersible – and into the abyss read more

    species of the week: Dendronephthya

    there are over 250 species of Carnation Tree Coral, including this peach-colored specimen found in Komodo National Park, Indonesia

    sample of the week: Gallium

    a soft, silvery metal whose melting point is so low that it turns to liquid in your hands. used in semiconductors, neutrino detection and, possibly in the future, in hydrogen energy transfer and storage systems


    Frozen Planet

    it’s taken us days and days and days to even start this post – possibly because we can’t actually bring ourselves to acknowledge that after almost sixty years of nature broadcasting, Sir David Attenborough might well have completed his last major TV epic read more

    Seana Gavin: cosmic worlds

    on distant moons and remote mountaintops, crystals slowly grow starwards, while lichens, mosses and funghi creep across the landscape. mushroom clouds bloom on the horizon, while planets and insects hover under orange skies. as strange figures dance on hilltops, expressways cut through canyons made of rock and cities

    this is the strange and wonderful world of collage artist Seana Gavin’s mind and art: a surreal set of worlds composed of images from our world, but utterly different. with her first three dimensional work opening this week at b store, and being fans of a good diorama, we thought it high time we caught up her to talk all things cosmic…

    read more

    sample of the week

    a 22.70g fragment of the Carancas meteorite, an H chondrite breccia containing clasts of petrologic types 4 to 5 which impacted the Puno Region of Peru on 15 September, 2007


    after nearly three decades of smashing particles together, physicists at America’s forerunner to the Large Hadron Collider will be raising a glass as the Tevatron is shut down for the final time later today. and while many are talking about the closure in the context of increasing international competition (like China’s recent space habitat launch), the team at Fermilab (whose amazing offices are pictured above) will probably be remembering the good times, like discovering the elusive top quark particle, and looking ahead to the mysteriously named Project X

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    All About: Science

    28 September 2011

    the first book in our new All About: Science series launches at The Landfill Library – a pop-up shop at Wiltons Café with new books by Landfill Editions and music from L-V-L and Burning Bush of TOP NICE. illustrated by our pals at Nous Vous, it’s all about crystals of every shape and size

    All About: Science is a new series from Landfill Editions and super/collider, exploring the myriad worlds of science through the eyes of contemporary image makers


    yesterday evening, NASA’s Dawn spacecraft began surveying Vesta, one of the largest asteroids we know of – and the brightest as seen from earth. after a spaceflight of 2.8 billion kilometres, the probe became the first to orbit an asteroid in the main belt last month, and has been slowly approaching its rocky surface even since. click here for a 3D image and more on what comes next


    if all goes to plan, today will see the launch of Juno: a heavily-shielded space probe bound for the radiation-drenched magnetosphere of Jupiter. the spacecraft and its three passengers will enter the Jovian system in 2016 and approach the planet over its north pole, avoiding the worst of the deadly radiation belts. once in orbit around the gas giant, the solar-powered probe will make 32 passes, skimming to within 5000 miles of the cloud tops. you can launch today’s launch live over on nasa.tv

    image: technicians at Astrotech’s payload processing facility in Titusville, Florida watch as NASA’s Juno spacecraft is tested for center of gravity, weighing and balancing on the rotation stand
    credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett


    even as the clock ticks down to the final shuttle launch, we’re counting down to the launch of very different but equally far out mission. next week, we’ll be joining Unknown Fields and students from the Architecture Association School of Architecture on the start of an epic journey through the atomic and cosmic regions of the former Soviet Union. you can join us for the public forum on Monday, then follow the trip, our Colossal Space curation and the work of various participants on our live blog, which will launch on the same day as the mission

    caption: the abandoned town of Prypiat, near Chernobyl
    credit: Flickr user Wolfhowl

    Unknown Fields

    in July 2011, super/collider joined Unknown Fields and students from the Architecture Association School on an epic journey into the atomic and cosmic regions of the former Soviet Union: from the ruins of Chernobyl to Baikonur Cosmodrome and points between and beyond read more


    sited at nearly 2400m above the Atlantic ocean, surrounded by utter darkness, the observing site at the European Northern Observatory on La Palma offers astronomers some of the best views of the night sky on Earth. every evening, the various telescopes there unveil and activate their advanced optics to begin tracking the stars – imaging hazy nebulas, distant galaxies and far-off worlds. located on the westernmost of the Canary Islands, the facility is perched high along the rim of an ancient volcanic caldera, far above clouds that drift towards the coast of Africa. silent and remote, it is truly a world apart – an island at the edge of the Universe

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    worlds in the making

    turning away from the star that has inspired much of their previous work, film/art duo Semiconductor’s first major UK solo show at FACT in Liverpool looks at the volcanic processes that have shaped the earth from within. the main work is projected over three screens, juxtaposing the work of the Instituto Geofisico Volcano Observatory in Tungurahua, Ecuador alongside stunning videos of the volcanoes and animations of crystals growing deep below the ground


    with the days stretching long into the night, summer solstice is nearly upon us – a traditional time of celebration and worship. but what causes this annual change, and why was it so important to the ancients? come find out on Monday as Science Fair™ delves into the fascinating world of archaeoastronomy with Professor Andrew Gregory of UCL for our first outdoor event of the summer



    the strange land between science fact and science fiction has produced some the most inspiring ideas, images and imaginings yet seen, which is why the British Library’s new Out of This World season has got us freaking out. combining far-out legends like Alan Moore and George Clinton with serious real life business like tonight’s ‘Fixing the Planet: Have we Finally got some Concrete Options?’ it’s science meets fiction uptown, in a library!



    all across the former USSR, a series of strange concrete monoliths stand in silent testimony to the final few decades of the Soviet Union – and the diverse architecture it produced. over the past seven years, Citizen K editor-in-chief Frédéric Chaubin has set about capturing these relics for his book Cosmic Communist Constructions Photographed, which includes facilities like the Polytechnic Institute of Minsk, the Ukrainian Institute of Scientific and Technological Research and Development and even a  lunar base-inspired youth summer camp

    read more


    forty years ago this afternoon, Apollo 11 blasted off from Cape Canaveral to deliver Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the moon

    read more