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Photographing the Moon: An Evening with Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Curators, Part 2—Through Astronaut Eyes

Jennifer Levasseur, curator of space history, National Air and Space Museum

The year 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing on July 20, 1969. Photography played a significant role both in preparing for the mission and in shaping the cultural consciousness of the event. By the Light of the Silvery Moon: A Century of Lunar Photographs features works ranging in date from the 19th century to the “space-age” 1960s. The event Photographing the Moon, held on October 3, 2019, at the National Gallery of Art, celebrated this exhibition by inviting three curators from the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum to give talks on the intertwined histories of photography and space exploration. In the second lecture, Jennifer Levasseur looked at photographs taken in space by people, revealing the ways that images captured by astronauts of the Apollo era have formed the framework for our understanding of human spaceflight today.