Monday, May 30th, 2022



perfect ceiling is perfect

And yet, it’s imperfection that makes people truly interesting. – E. A. Poe, as channeled by @seanpersaud

So, this post came through my dash, and I thought huh, I should know that part of the sky. So I started looking more closely at the constellations. And went, hey; wait a second. Leo doesn’t face to the left. He faces to the right. And Cygnus and Lyra are on the wrong sides of each other. What’s going on here??!! Perfect ceiling isn’t perfect at all. It’s entirely cattywumpus. Did some artist just slap stuff down wherever they thought it would look good, accuracy be damned? The nerve!

Ah, me. I’m so… me… sometimes.

So of course I had to dig deeper. And this is what I found.

Reverse google image search led me to the (uncredited) source photo. It’s from the website of Manchik Photography, which photographed the (stunningly beautiful) wedding of Camilla and Damir, which took place in the penthouse suite of San Francisco’s Fairmont Hotel, which in turn was “created in the Roaring Twenties by famed American archaeologist and art historian, Arthur Upham Pope.”

That ceiling, which sits above the suite’s two-story circular library, is hand-painted gold that recreates a 16th-century celestial map. And guess what? As explained by Berks Astronomy:

Many early charts and atlases were drawn with an “external” or reverse-geocentric view like celestial globes.  When we look “down” at the surface of a celestial globe, star patterns appear reversed because we are viewing them from outside the celestial sphere.

So guess what? Perfect ceiling actually is perfect.

More links:

Reblogging myself to answer this question from a reply added this morning to this 5-year-old post. @ladyseraphinecc , your answer is above.

Reposted from