Clarke Center Presents Jon Lomberg

Lomberg at Clarke CenterArtist Jon Lomberg, a speaker at the Starship Century Symposium last May, will return to the Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination at UCSD for two appearances in December.

Jon Lomberg is one of the foremost artists inspired by astronomy. He did Emmy Award-winning work as Chief Artist for Carl Sagan’s Cosmos series. And he was Design Director of NASA’s Voyager Interstellar Record, the self-portrait of humanity now on its way to the stars.

Lomberg’s December 3 presentation is “Becoming Galactic: Citizens of the Galaxy”:

The word cosmopolitan literally means a citizen of the Cosmos. Our generation is emerging into the Milky Way, and becoming a planetary species. Jon Lomberg shows some ways that an artist can respond to this amazing fact, combining physics and artistry to create the “cosmic perspective” advocated by Lomberg’s friend and long-time collaborator, Carl Sagan. He will feature a description of his unique Galaxy Garden.

The Galaxy Garden models the Milky Way to scale with a garden of living things. By now Lomberg’s plantings have reached full size. galaxygarden2

A fountain in the middle of the garden marks the “gravity well” with a bimodal jet so water is going both directions. Out on the galactic arm corresponding to the position of our solar system, the place where the Sun would be is marked by a tiny jewel on a leaf. Driving home the scale involved, Lomberg says all the stars we can see with the naked eye are either on that same leaf or an adjoining leaf!


At Lomberg’s second appearance, the Galaxy Garden Workshop on December 7, he will explain how the garden is used to encourage science education, and demonstrate hands-on teaching activities that can be done indoors or outdoors using large-scale, explorable model galaxies. 

This event, while open to anyone, is particularly  designed to appeal to teachers in physical sciences grades 4-12, creators of informal science education activities, artists interested in novel art/science collaborations, gardening clubs and astronomy clubs.

The day’s activities will include building a model galaxy with fishing line grid, paper plates, spattered paint, toothpicks, and Play-Dough.


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2 thoughts on “Clarke Center Presents Jon Lomberg

  1. I remember Jon Lomberg back in the ’70s, when he lived in Toronto and before Carl Sagan “discovered” his paintings at Bakka. Back then, of course, nobody knew what anyone’s future was going to be like. I lost touch with Lomberg pretty quickly once he left town, but would now and then see some of his work in a book, or hear that he had painted a wall for the Smithsonian or something.

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