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10.23.09

Universal Origins

Four hundred years ago when Galileo turned his tiny telescope to the night sky our view of the universe changed forever. Since that historic moment, we have continued to gain an appreciation for the vastness of space, while struggling to find our place in it.  We ask: Where did we come from? Are we alone?

Today, astronomers look deep inside the dark regions of space and explore the hidden universe within. Peering far enough back in time, we now probe the very origin of the universe itself.

Exploring these questions, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope Science Center is participating in the Pasadena Art & Ideas festival "Origins" with an exhibit titled: "Origins in the Universe". The festival runs October 23 - November 8, 2009 in Pasadena, Calif.

The One Colorado courtyard in Old Pasadena is the home of the Spitzer installation, with an exhibit of spectacular cosmic imagery, and a selection of Spitzer's award-winning short videos. The videos are shown from dusk until 10 p.m. on weekends during the festival.

Have a question about cosmic origins? Spitzer astronomers will be in the One Colorado courtyard Friday and Saturday nights during the festival from 7-9 p.m., presenting theatrical scientific demonstrations, and providing an opportunity to "Ask an Astronomer" burning questions about the cosmos.

The Art & Ideas Festival is presented every two years by a consortium of Pasadena-area arts, science and cultural institutions.  Collaborating partners choose a theme that lends itself to multiple perspectives that are both innovative and timely, and creatively interpret the theme according to their institutional focus. Drawing on the strengths of these Pasadena-based institutions, Art & Ideas provides a range of cultural and educational activities for mainstream public audiences — original programming that inspires public dialogue and works to contribute to arts appreciation and intellectual growth in creative and meaningful ways. The goal for Art & Ideas is to be artistically and intellectually resonant to a diverse audience and a changing world. 

For the 2009 theme, the collaborating partners have chosen ORIGINS, and they explore and interpret this theme through specially curated exhibitions and programs. The origins of political dissent, storytelling, crafts and architecture—in addition to deeper questions about the rise of man, faith and the universe—are just a few of the many ways in which this unique theme will be interpreted through dance, visual art, music, architecture, theater, film, photography and literature.

For more information see http://www.artideasfestival.org/