Inflatable Planetarium Has All-Encompassing View of Cosmos

This past November, nestled under London's A13 highway, was an mysterious glowing orb that invited visitors to crawl inside and take a look. It was called Osmo and was designed by the London studio Loop.pH as part of the city's annual Light Night Canning Town. The project featured a pneumatically-inflated cocoon fashioned from silver mylar, and its viewers could pass through the zip-up entrance and sit beneath the stars in a brilliant, all-encompassing setting.

Loop.pH projected the galaxy onto a 29-foot-high surface with lasers and based it on the actual night sky. They used this map from In the Sky, which charts 88 constellations onto a 2D rectangular map. So, the designers had the challenge of projecting something flat onto a (roughly) spherical object. The 3D modeling program Rhino and a graphical algorithm editor called Grasshopper helped them with this.

The installation wasn't an exact science but was a stunning experience nonetheless. When inside Osmo, visitors could look in any direction and were free from horizon lines, bad weather, and other factors – it provided them a more intimate look at the multitude of stars.

Loop.pH website
via [Gizmodo]

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met and Manager of My Modern Met Store. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.

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