America’s Grandest Movie Palaces Find Strange New Lives

French photographers Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre spent over a decade photographing former movie palaces like San Francisco’s old Alhambra Theater, which has been converted into a gym.

When it opened in 1925, the Uptown Theater was Chicago’s largest theater. Closed in 1981, it is currently awaiting restoration.

Berkeley, California’s 1,400-seat Rivoli Theater opened in 1925 and closed in the 1950s. It has subsequently been converted into various supermarkets.

The 1,000-seat Fox Theater in Inglewood, California, opened in 1949 and served as a major site for Hollywood movie premieres in the 1950s. It closed in 1984 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2012.

New York’s Gotham Theater showed movies from the 1920s to the 1950s and was subsequently converted into a disco and now a supermarket.

San Diego’s Loma Theater operated from 1945 to 1987 and has now been converted into a bookstore.

Brooklyn’s 4,100-seat Paramount Theater [...]  read more

8 Earth Day Galleries to Show Off the Wonders of the World

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Space Photos of the Week: Mooooooon Shadow, Moon Shadow

NASA has big plans to go back to the moon, so the first order of business is to look into lunar locations where resources are accessible. One of those prime spots is its southern pole, where water ice is hidden in shadowed craters. This black and white photo, taken by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, shows the Shackleton crater in the center—one of several craters in the south that is permanently in shadow and likely contains a large amount of water ice.

Mars goes technicolor in this elongated image. This stretch of land is the plains between Chryse and Acidalia Planitias, which like so much of Mars has a pretty active past. The darker blues indicate basaltic rocks, formed during the region’s violent volcanic history; the oranges are formations created by the wind, and as such are called windstreaks. You can even see how the material has been lifted up around the crater and pushed south.

In February, comet C2018 Y1 Iwamoto flew past the Earth some 56 million miles away. [...]  read more

The Hunt for Rocket Boosters in Russia’s Far North

The boreal forest of the Mezensky district in Arkhangelsk Oblast, Russia, teems with wild reindeer, wolverines, and grouse. But the hunter photographer Makar Tereshin followed there in January—his fifth trip to the region while shooting his stunning series Fields of Fall— was after bigger, more exotic prey: a 65-foot-long Soyuz rocket booster.

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It crashed among the birches and pines in 1989 after blasting off from Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Mirny some 200 miles south. Constructed in the late 1950s as the world’s first intercontinental missile base, the military facility performed more than 1,500 spacecraft launches between 1966 and 2005—more than 60 each year of the 1970s. Much of the launch [...]  read more

The Stunning Loneliness of Megacities at Night

Last year the United Kingdom appointed its first minister for loneliness, partly in response to an official study finding that over nine million UK residents often or always feel lonely. “For far too many people, loneliness is the sad reality of modern life,” Prime Minister Theresa May said at the time.

One of those nine million people is photographer Aristotle Roufanis, who moved to London from his native Greece a few years ago to pursue a master’s degree in fine arts. “Even though I had many friends and family there, I felt very isolated,” Roufanis recalls. “It started to become very heavy for me.” When he brought up the subject with his London friends, he discovered that many of them felt the same way but were reluctant to acknowledge it. “No one admits they’re lonely. It’s easier to admit you have a disease than that you feel isolated.”

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Space Photos of the Week: Black Holes and Jellyfish Rainbows

NASA studies cosmic phenomena of all sorts, but here it’s tackling something very close to home. It recently launched two rockets as part of the Auroral Zone Upwelling Rocket Experiment, or AZURE, meant to study the Earth’s aurora. Each rocket measures the density of the atmosphere and releases gas tracers—those are the jellyfish-things you see in this image.

Behold the first image of a black hole humankind has ever seen. On Wednesday, the Event Horizon Telescope array released the first photo of the ultramassive black hole at the center of the M87 galaxy, some 55 million light years away. The dark center is the shadow being cast by the bright ring of the event horizon. At this black hole that is not just big—it’s 6.5 billion times more massive than our Sun, making it as large as our entire solar system.

Scientists using the Cooled Mid-Infrared Camera and Spectrograph, or COMICS instrument, at the Subaru [...]  read more

The Impressionistic Tracings of Airplane Lights at Night

Every day, airplanes make 43,000 trips through United States airspace, each beginning or ending at one of the nation’s 19,000 or so airports. It’s a rhythmic stream of departures and arrivals so regular as to seem rote, yet it never fails to mesmerize Pete Mauney. Over the past two years, Mauney has spent an inordinate number of evenings photographing aircraft taking off and landing, their flashing lights weaving gold webbed patterns through the sky.

“I’m totally obsessed,” he says.

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That obsession began six years ago with something else that flies and flashes: lightning bugs. After reading an online tutorial, Mauney began taking long exposure  [...]  read more

Photographing All 2,000 Miles of the US-Mexico Border

When photographer Elliott Ross and writer Genevieve Allison decided to travel all 2,000 miles of the US-Mexico border for their latest book project, they estimated it would take around five weeks. In the end, it took five months.

“Yeah, it was a bit of a naïve undertaking,” Ross admits with a laugh.

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Ross and Allison, both New York residents, hatched the idea for the project after attending the January 2017 inauguration of President Trump in Washington, DC, where they interviewed attendees about their reasons for supporting the New York real estate developer. At the top of the list for supporter after supporter [...]  read more

Space Photos of the Week: YORP Effect, Cosmic Ducks, and More

This is Gault, an asteroid that is slowly breaking apart as it moves through space. It’s about 500,000 miles long and over 3,000 miles wide. Scientists think that it’s being destroyed by a mechanism called YORP—basically sunlight hits the surface of the asteroid and warms it up. The radiation that escapes due to the heating also takes some of the angular momentum, causing the asteroid to spin faster. This results in the asteroid losing material and starting to separate. Eventually the two tails will spread out and dissolve into space.

Clouds swirl and dance around themselves above the Indian Ocean in this photo taken by an astronaut on the International Space Station last month. Towards the upper left of the photo the thin, bright blue veneer of our atmosphere is what contains us and separates us from space.

This long colorful photo shows a region on Mars called Meridiani Planum, the home and final resting place of NASA’s Opportunity rover. The rover spent 15 years exploring [...]  read more

Russia’s Bid to Exploit Gas Under the Stunning Arctic Tundra

It isn’t every day you find yourself playing ping pong in the Arctic. But there wasn’t much else for Charles Xelot and others aboard the Russian cargo ship RZK Constanta to do besides engage in bouts of table tennis, watch TV, or relax in the on-board sauna. The vessel carried construction supplies for a new liquefied natural gas plant on the remote Yamal Peninsula, but its route through the Kara Sea along the Northeast Passage was frozen. An ice-breaker couldn’t tow it for another couple weeks—leaving the crew plenty of time for R&R. “It was like a paid holiday for them,” Xelot says.

That experience two winters ago illustrates the challenges Russia faces as it attempts to exploit the Arctic’s resources—a subject Xelot documents in his poetic series There Is Gas Under the Tundra. His surreal, industrial photographs depict the construction of the new plant, [...]  read more