I attended a lecture at Te Papa not too long ago, where the Head of Arts and Visual Cultures Jonathan Mane-Wheoki discussed how science and technology had influenced the painters of the day. The question posed to this painting was "How did Monet get there?"
Meadow with Poplars - Claude Monet
By train. The ability for the Parisian artists to travel far and wide quickly and easily, with their new collapsable easels and chairs, and innovative paint sold in portable tubes instead of pots and powers and oils (that had been the norm only until recently), allowed Monet to paint these exquisite portraits of the land in the landscape, just as he saw them, capturing his impression of the time and space as it existed around him. It made me wonder at what new technology will allow artists to see and perceive perspectives that may not have been possible before this age. What landscapes might be available to painters in the future?
Clouds above Mars - NASA http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/missions/mer/images.cfm?id=785