Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

Artist Luke Jerram creates the most dazzling glass-blown representations of microbes, to the awe of scientists and the general public. His glass microbiology series includes viruses like H.I.V. and bacteria like E. coli in remarkable structural detail. Colorblind, the artist focused on the shapes and textures of these pathogens. Some works are currently on display in a Manhattan art gallery.

Luke Jerram’s glass-blown representation of H.I.V. Image provided courtesy of the artist.

Luke Jerram’s series is not without its critics. Some, including medical professionals, question whether he should use the causes of deadly and incurable diseases for artistic purposes. However, such criticisms may underplay the power of these works of art to engage the public and put a face on faceless pathogens. These breathtaking works reveal a world of biology and medicine hidden for millennia by the limitations of the human eye, and dampened even in the 21st century by the limitations of the two-dimensional images we use to view these creatures under a microscope. Luke Jerram’s works bring that much-needed third dimension. Take a look for yourself.

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NASA and the Houston Symphony have joined forces, bringing the music of The Planets together with NASA images of those planets. This stunning union of great music and awe-inspiring images has taken Houston by storm, and is set to tour Europe (though only once that pesky Icelandic volcano calms down).

The Planets???

The Planets (Opus 32) is a seven-movement orchestral suite written by British composer Gustav Holst between 1914 and 1916. Of all his works, this suite remains his most famous and most performed. Each movement is dedicated to a planet. While not much was known about the planets when Holst composed this work, he crafted the movements to relate mostly to the planet’s astrological properties. There aren’t movements for Earth (not an astrological sign) or Pluto (which wasn’t discovered until 1930, and now isn’t considered a planet anyway).

Here are the movements, with Holst’s titles and my brief description:

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Petri Dishes are shallow, round dishes used for growing cells. They’re named for Julius Petri, the German bacteriologist who invented them in the 19th century. Historically, petri dishes were made of glass. But, these days, all the petri dishes I work with are plastic.

Klari Reis took 365 petri dishes and made them into enchanting works of art. She painted each one, taking inspiration from cells seen under a microscope. They’re gorgeous works, and she made a blog showing all 365 of them! Here’s my favorite, so far…

Take a look at “The Daily Dish” and then visit her website!

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