What Cities Would Look Like if Lit Only by the Stars

San Francisco


Therefore, Thierry Cohen decided to create images that would be exactly simulated cities, lit only by stars.



When the eastern regions of Canada and the United States plunged into darkness due to a power outage in August 2003, some residents of New York have seen a sky of stars for the first time in their life. Big cities are illuminated with millions of lights at night: of headlights and traffic lights, windows, of neon signs, storefronts etc. Unfortunately, this is impractical to see a sky of stars without light pollution.

Hong Kong


He said, that by combining two realities, he was making a third that you can’t see, but it exists. He told that, he was showing the missing stars.

Rio de Janeiro


Cohen noticed, that photography was the way of showing things that we couldn’t see and the way to dream. He said he wasn’t showing post-apocalyptic cities, merely cities without electricity, but he was bringing back the silence.



Cohen visited nine cities, including New York, San Francisco, Rio de Janeiro and Hong Kong, to create a photo project ‘Darkened Cities’



Each photo of this project consists of two separate images. First of all Thierry made a photo of the city, and then he was looking for a suitable unit place in the same latitude to take a picture of the sky.

Los Angeles


That’s interesting, but he was making photos of cities not at night, but in the afternoon, using gray filters. He told that it was better to make a photo when it was cloudy, there was no sun and no harsh shadows.



Thierry Cohen lives in Paris. He says “Photography is about poetry more than it is about reality.It is how you see the world. You can show the world you want to show.”



As a professional photographer Thierry Cohen works since 1985. Only twenty years later, he took the time to make his own photo projects including ‘Darkened Cities’.

Hong Kong