Center Gallery, Main Level:
IMAGING THE COSMOS: A LOCAL ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY COLLECTIVE
Jim Mazur is Professor Emeritus at Southern Connecticut
State University, where he has taught in the Psychology Department
for over 30 years. His interest in astronomy began in fourth grade
when his parents gave him his first telescope, a 3-inch reflector.
He enjoys observing the night sky with all types of optical equipment,
large and small, and he frequently participates in public observing
nights with the Astronomical Society of New Haven. Over the years, he
has tried many different types of astrophotography, ranging from
snapshots of the Moon to long-duration images of distant galaxies.
Currently he takes most of his pictures of the night sky from his
backyard in Killingworth, Connecticut.
Kurt Zeppetello is a full-time high school
chemistry and sometimes astronomy teacher at Seymour High School.
He has always enjoyed astronomy, and more recently has become
passionate about astrophotography. Kurt specializes in deep sky
objects of all types, such as galaxies, clusters, and nebula.
Recently, he has become interested in imaging unusual and less
studied objects, including dark reflection nebula, enjoying
how the dust reflects the light from nearby stars producing
many different soft colors and unusual shapes. He shares his
imaging expertise on his website and YouTube Channel.
Shannon Calvert is a professional photographer,
graphic designer, and copywriter from Easton, Connecticut. He
serves as president of the Westport Astronomical Society, and has
been an active astrophotographer since 2016.
Elliot Severn is an educator at the Discovery
Museum and a longtime member of the Boothe Memorial Astronomical
Society in Stratford. At age 11, he started experimenting with
film astrophotography, and refined his deep sky imaging skills
at the Stull Observatory while attending Alfred University.
Elliot specializes in remote rocket launch photography and is
a contributing photographer for StarTalk and AmericaSpace. You
can see more of his work at spaceflightphotography.com.
currently living in Jersey City. His passion for photography
frequently takes him to Iceland and Scandinavia, where he
chases dark skies and aurora borealis. Cole is also a Wallops
Flight Facility launch photographer for AmericaSpace and works
in the film industry in New York. He currently works as prop
master on the set of ABC’s Sci-Fi series, Emergence. You can
see more of Cole’s work on Instagram @colecoldwater and at
WORK BY CRIS DAM
The art of Cris Dam lights up the walls at the Discovery Museum as we debut our new Digistar technology in the Henry B. DuPont III Planetarium. City Lights Gallery, Bridgeport Art Trail, and the Discovery Museum have initiated a partnership to feature local artists in their second floor gallery space.
His unique choice of materials projects a sense of idiosyncratic personality and locomotion to the common lightbulb, by incorporating the illuminated spheres into his compositions. He actually paints his paintings while the lightbulbs in the compositions are on. He has created a site-specific work for the exhibit. Starlight and lightbulbs range from two-dimensional painting to a sculptural installation, where he completely abandons the canvas, enabling the viewer to playfully enjoy works that echo the quality of illumination, from light bulbs to the night. The work functions as a companion piece which echoes the installation of the Discovery Museum’s recently installed state-of-the-art, high-resolution Digistar planetarium system.
Cris Dam was born in Anchorage, Alaska, and raised in Granada, Spain. He attended Parsons School of Design and SUNY’s Studio Art MFA Program before becoming a full-time curator, artist, and community organizer. In 1998, he cofounded Dam, Stuhltrager Gallery, becoming an early gallerist to propel Williamsburg, Brooklyn, into an international art mecca. Dam has since traveled internationally for commissions and shows in Germany, Istanbul, and Russia, and he has been quick to become an esteemed figure in the Fairfield County art community after relocating his studio to Bridgeport’s Arcade Mall in 2017.
SUNSET SCIENCE: PHOTOGRAPHY BY MICHAEL FLORIO
Connecticut native Michael Florio has a huge passion for photography, art, science, and technology. His love of these subjects has brought him through a rabbit hole of wonder and amazement. His desire to share the incredible aspects of our universe with others is captured through a dynamic study of sunsets and the fascinating reasons why we experience the glorious colors in a twilight sky.
He wishes to reignite the imagination in adults and inspire young people, whether it is through the art of photography, exploring the cosmos through a telescope, or creating an at-home science project.