Darkened Cities: The Night Sky You Don't See

For city-dwellers, the night sky can be unimpressive because of light pollution. Cities are often awash in light, masking out all but the brightest of stars and planets. Step outside a major metropolis, though, and the heavens become a sea of stars.

All photos are © Thierry Cohen courtesy of the Danziger Gallery

New York

French photographer Thierry Cohen has found a way to combine city and country views to show what urbanites have been missing. He photographs major cities, noting the precise time, angle, and latitude and longitude of his exposures. He then shoots the sky at the same angles from remote places at the same latitude, and digitally combines the images to show what the night sky would look like if we could turn out the lights.

Rio de Janiero

Los Angeles



Hong Kong

Brooklyn Bridge


San Francisco

Sao Paolo

Thierry Cohen began his professional career in 1985 and is seen as one of the pioneers of digital photography. His work has been shown at the Palais de Tokyo, and the Musee de l'Homme in Paris, and in 2008 was an official selection of the Mois de la Photo. Since 2010 he has devoted himself exclusively to his Villes Enteintes project, French for Darkened Cities.

An exhibit of Darkened Cities can been can be seen at New York's Danziger Gallery. The show runs from March 28 to May 4, 2013.