The Poetic Clarity of That ‘Pale Blue Dot’

Through Photography, Science Has Given Humanity a Sense of Itself

When the Voyager 1 space probe was launched in 1977, it was equipped with a camera to chronicle its travels through the cosmos. One of the images that astronomer Carl Sagan hoped the probe would capture was that of Earth as the probe left the confines of our solar system, leaving our little planet, a “pale blue dot,” behind. Sagan thought this image of a barely visible Earth could help humanity more precisely understand our place in a vast and endless universe. “There is perhaps no better demonstration of …

Can Muscle Cars Really Fly? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Can Muscle Cars Really Fly?

Matthew Porter’s Photographs of an American Symbol Conjure Dreamlike Worlds

Muscle cars are a quintessential American symbol: fast, powerful, and entirely impractical. But perhaps it’s their impracticability that makes these gas-guzzling, aggressively loud vehicles coveted by so many. Having a …

Are Horses ‘God’s Most Perfect Design’?

Keith Carter’s Enigmatic Photographs Reveal the Invisible Bonds Between Humans and Animals

Keith Carter began to take his own pictures after he happened upon one of his mother’s color prints when he was 19. His mother made her living as a studio …

Dawoud Bey’s Unwavering Candor

The Chicago-Based Photographer’s Portraits Chronicle the American Experience

To understand how the past 40 years have revolutionized the way we see cities, look at the first and last chapters of a new book on the long and distinguished …

Have You Ever Stared Into an Alpaca’s Soul?

Photographer Traer Scott Views Livestock as Individuals Rather Than Numbers

Have you ever felt the direct, penetrating gaze of an alpaca? Or admired the symmetry of a sheep’s fuzzy nose? Or rued the fact that you had never stroked a …

In Louisiana’s Fishing Villages, Food and Faith Are Found in the Water

Photographer J. T. Blatty Captures a Vanishing Way of Life in the Bayou

For generations, water has provided everything to the people of southeastern Louisiana’s fishing communities. Their meals. Their livelihoods. Their recreation. Their birthright. Even their faith, as one photograph by J. …