The Project

As long as humankind has existed, people have been captivated by the myriad of pinpoints of light on the night sky. Are there other worlds out there? Might such worlds be similar to ours, or unimaginably different? Presently, international collaborators work on the development of a global network of astronomical telescopes. The geographical locations of the network allow uninterrupted, 24-hour coverage of the night sky, as at least one of the observatories is shrouded in darkness at any given time. For the first time, humankind looks into space together. In collaboration with Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network (LCOGT), Qatar Exoplanet Survey (QES) and Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF), the deep dark pale blue-project uses this new dimension of scientific research as an opportunity not only to look at the exploration of the night sky, but also to relate astronomical science to fundamental social and human issues. For, while we have the possibility to observe far-away galaxies, what do we really know about each other? About people’s lives, cultures and environments on “our“ planet? An astronomer’s thought – “The farther we explore deep space, the more we reflect on what it means to be human” – shapes the leitmotif for this project, which will take Florian Schwarz to observatories around the globe. The multi-media project explores the relation between the macro- and the microcosm, that of Space and the Individual. Conducted by humankind’s eternal desire to explore the universe, contextualized by our own existence on the Blue Planet. That pale blue dot.

The Author

Florian Schwarz (Germany, 1979) studied Photography at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp, Belgium, and Documentary Filmmaking at Edinburgh College of Art. In recent years, his project-related work lead to series with street-children in Honduras, a train-journey from southern Germany to Siberia on the traces of his grandfather’s war imprisonment and a long-term portrait - over three years - of a Native American street musician in Nashville. Florian’s work has been exhibited and screened internationally, such as Goethe-Institute Madrid, Noorderlicht Photofestival, National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh and Photo Espana. His first documentary film (2012, about life and work of an astronomer) marks the starting point for the multimedia-project deep dark pale blue. Florian Schwarz lives and works in the southern German countryside.