Space art is a general term for art emerging from knowledge and ideas associated with outer space, both as a source of inspiration and as a means for visualizing and promoting space travel. Whatever the stylistic path, the artist is generally attempting to communicate ideas somehow related to space, often including appreciation of the infinite variety and vastness which surrounds us. In some cases, artists who consider themselves space artists use more than illustration and painting to communicate scientific discoveries or works depicting space; a new breed of space artists work directly with space flight technology and scientists as an opportunity to expand the arts, humanities and cultural expression relative to space exploration.
The Cosmos contains many sources of visual inspiration that our growing abilities to gather and propagate has spread through the mass culture. The first photographs of the entire Earth by satellites and manned Apollo missions brought a new sense of our world as an island in empty space and promoted ideas of the essential units of Humanity. Photographs taken by explorers on the Moon shared the experience of being on another world. The famous ‘Pillars of Creation’ Hubble Space Telescope and other Hubble photos often evoke intense responses from viewers, see for example Hubble’s Planetary Nebula. Perhaps such images provide modern audiences with fresh visions through which the religious awe invoked by the great murals in cathedrals of earlier centuries can be experienced anew.