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Intergalactic Geographic Retrospective Lands at the Science (fiction!) Center

Alien lifeforms. Time machines. Comic books.

It's not the usual University City Science Center material, but the Center's Esther Klein Gallery is greeting summer with a lighthearted, farcical exhibition that spans 3,000 years and promises to "offer some answers to those who are willing to suspend reality and take a trip into the future."

Angela McQuillan, the gallery curator, agrees that the show is "more imaginative and fun. There's not a lot of real science going on."

The sci-fi and comic book-inspired exhibition features the work of Philadelphia artist Pat Aulisio and New York artist Josh Burggraf. The two have created a multi-media exhibition that incorporates sculpture, video and a special-edition printed copy of the "scientific journal" Intergalactic Geographic, which will be available for sale. The farcical publication features work by "the future's galactic journalists, photographers, holographers, dark mirror reporters and primetime superstars."

A fan and hobbyist in Philly's comic book scene, McQuillan was very familiar with the collaborators. Aulisio is a local artist and educator primarily focused on comics featuring hobbies such as amateur time travel. Burggraf works as a commercial animator and storyboard artist, and is editor of the Astro Plus Press where he constructs alternate personal universes on paper, the web and on screen.

According to McQuillan, comic books and science fiction "can be a portal to real science." And she has another motive in mounting the show: "Philadelphia has a big scene of people who make comic books and self-published art books. I wanted to draw attention to that scene and bring it to the Science Center."

Intergalactic Geographic Retrospective launches Thursday with an opening reception from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at 3600 Market Street. It closes Saturday, July 30 with a closing reception from 5 to 8 p.m. at Innovation Plaza, the Center's pocket park located on 37th Street between Market and Chestnut streets.

WRITER IN RESIDENCE is a partnership between the University City Science Center and Flying Kite Media that embeds a reporter on-site at 3711 Market Street. The resulting coverage will provide an inside look at the most intriguing companies, discoveries and technological innovations coming out of this essential Philadelphia institution.

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Kristen Fitch

Senior Director, Marketing