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Rainfall Prediction & Graphic Design

From the Artist:

“What I found to be interesting about predicting rainfall using the stars was that we all look at the stars and get lost! By playing off of star mapping, I wanted the audience to do a double take and realize a statement was being made about our own scale and size compared to the universe.

To create this piece I first thought about how the ability to predict rainfall using the stars can affect all of us. I asked myself and friends what impact finding another way of predicting rainfall could have on the world. I then tried to find the guts of the concept by asking questions about the breakthrough itself and how it should be represented. In the end I decided to take something you see so often (stars) and change the way you look at them.”

— Steve Attardo


The Science

Both in ancient and modern times predicting rainfall accurately has been important business. Literature shows that settlers on the Nile River used astrometeorological observations to predict rainfall and to warn about incoming floods. In 2012 we’re still looking at the stars to predict rainfall. Sri Lankan scientist Maleen Wijeratna built on the knowledge of ancient science and aimed to find a productive method to predict rainfall by using the stars. More particularly, the alpha and beta stars on the azimuth grid. Using the stars on the grid and the Sun, the Moon, Venus, Betelgeuse, Bellatrix (on Orion’s Shoulder) and the brightest star, Sirius, Maleen’s study was able accurately predict rainfall in Sri Lanka.


The Artist

Steve Attardo is an artist based in New York City who has been designing all his life. After attending the School of Visual Arts Steve honed his craft and found a tallent for creating book covers. His work for Jay-Z’s Decoded was included in the AIGA 50/50 contest.