The Overview Effect

Soft Back, Perfect Bound,
HP Indigo Press
110gsm GF Smith,
Bright White.

Screen Printed A2 Poster,
160gsm GF Smith Textured,
Bright White.

The overview effect, coined in 1987 by Frank White is a cognitive shift in awareness reported by the majority of astronauts during spaceflight and describes a change away from the 'artificial boundaries' of borders and nationhood. The success of the humanoid species has been forged on cooperation, we can track the evolution of society from groups of hunter-gathers, through to early villages and kingdoms to countries and empires.

Each change in society has required a huge cognitive shift defining us and them. The overview effect is in keeping with this trend and is often mentioned in tandem with 'Spaceship Earth Theory' famously popularised by Buckminster Fuller. For more information visit The Overview Institute

In the light of the Anthropocene, this work brings forth the Overview Effect - examining its properties and communicating the context, beginning with the space race and leading into the birth of the environmental movement.

Cold War
Studio Shot
Crab Nebula


Copyright. Joshua Hayes Davidson