On 7th of December 1972 Harrison Schmitt took the first full-disc photo of our home planet. The famous „blue marble“ picture. When Schmitt pressed the trigger of his Hasselblad camera he was sitting in the Apollo 17 capsule 29.000 km from home on the way to the moon.

In the following 43 years, no such picture was taken. We earth inhabitants had to base our picture of home on this photography and on images that were either digitally created from collected data or patched together from close-ups taken by satellites.

This was until the 4th of July 2015 when the DSCOVR (Deep Space Climate Observatory) satellite went into service and took the first full-disc image of earth since 1972. Since this day, DSCOVR takes up to 12 pictures of our home planet every day.

Besides its scientific purpose, the DSCOVR mission marks the conclusion of Al Gore‘s idea that a satellite sending live images of our planet would help to understand its fragility and the need to react on climate change. It was Al Gore who initiated the DSCOVR program in 1998 during his vice presidential term.

Even though since 1972, no human has been far enough into space to see the earth as a full disc, we all have an image in mind of our little gas-coated wet rock that orbits a small sun in one of the arms of a spiral galaxy somewhere in the universe.

„earth“ is a composite image created by superimposing 100 depictions of the earth taken from the internet. One of them is the blue marble photo from 1972, a few are taken by DSCOVR, while most are digitally created images from different sources, amongst them google earth. 

Our picture of our home is still mostly based on digitaly generated images and simulations – and most of us still behave accordingly. Yet, with DSCOVR in place, there might be hope that Al Gore‘s idea can be fruitile and we all understand the difference between a simulation and a fact.

earth   2019

pigment print / Hahnemühle + Aludibond / 120 x 80 cm

exhibition view:  „more than the sum of its parts“  /  Art Agenda Nova Gallery, Kraków  /  2019

pigment print / Hahnemühle + Aludibond / 120 x 80 cm