Thierry Cohen

In this haunting series, Thierry Cohen rids urban areas of their electric lights to reveal luminous celestial vistas.

Cities have got a lot of things going for them, but starry skies are not one of them. All those lights and the pollution they bring with them tarnish the star-studded nights the less populous parts of the world enjoy.

Photographer Thierry Cohen solves the problem, sorta, in his "Darkened Cities" photo series. His solution—to rid cityscapes of their electric lights and reintroduce the celestial vistas hidden away under the thick veil of pollutants–is a bit excessive, but the results are dazzling.

Cohen crisscrossed the globe in pursuit of his project. His itinerary matched large metropolises like Hong Kong and New York, with more deserted spots, like the Mojave and the Amazon, according to their latitudinal alignment. He photographed the cities by day to capture the silhouette of their skylines, then darkened them in post-production. He then dropped in the more vibrant skies he found in places like the Western Sahara behind blacked-out skyscrapers. The result is strange, to say the least, but beautiful, especially in those images depicting coastline cities, where supernovas and star clusters are reflected in the harbors below.

All images courtesy of Thierry Cohen.

This post originally appeared on Architizer, an Atlantic partner site.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. photo: a For Rent sign in a window in San Francisco.
    Coronavirus

    Do Landlords Deserve a Coronavirus Bailout, Too?

    Some renters and homeowners are getting financial assistance during the economic disruption from the coronavirus pandemic. What about landlords?

  2. Coronavirus

    How to Make People Stay Home

    To help flatten the curve in the Covid-19 outbreak, officials at all levels of government are asking people to stay home. Here's what’s worked, and what hasn't.

  3. Coronavirus

    Black Businesses Left Behind in Covid-19 Relief

    The latest U.S. coronavirus aid package promises a partial and uneven economic recovery that leaves behind the African American community.

  4. Equity

    We'll Need To Reopen Our Cities. But Not Without Making Changes First.

    We must prepare for a protracted battle with coronavirus. But there are changes we can make now to prepare locked-down cities for what’s next.

  5. photo: Former HUD secretary Julián Castro
    Equity

    How to Head Off a Coronavirus Housing Crisis

    Former HUD secretary and presidential candidate Julián Castro has ideas for state and federal leaders on protecting vulnerable renters from a housing disaster.

×