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Naive Beauty?

Saturday, April 23, 2011

To be honest I went quite fast through the exhibition. Not meaning that I disliked it, but the images of different microorganisms from either humans or nature were fascinating but simple. You didn’t need to investigate them deeper to understand what the intention was. According to Sjarel Ex, Director of Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, they were a pure and real example of life. But is it?

Looking at the images, we think we understand the philosophy of the living. Something we don’t always think about or look at in the same perspective.
I really enjoyed the images themselves, but personally I’ve seen a lot of them before in biology books or at science museums. In a book or at a science museum you would usually see the microscopic organism next to a text and an example of how we see it with our eyes, which is in this case simplified with just an explanation of the organism. For an art museum, I think this is a good choice to keep the attention with the images.
I still don’t agree with the title “’Beauty in Science” as scientists intention is not to make these organisms beautiful. It is not the beauty in science, but the beauty in organisms. But I don’t know weather we could have got to this beauty without science. Maybe it would have been more beautiful if we didn’t know, if we were not so informed.
People might be going to this museum without realizing that this presentation is just another example of our greediness. Why is it not enough just imagining how the organism works?
Only a real scientist, investigating with honesty, might get closer to thinking he knows how it works. While we, maybe the audience in an art museum, are all naively pretending to know.
So putting it up in a museum is, I think naive and pretentious and not ‘a pure and real example of life’. Not saying that the images are not visually inspiring, because they certainly are.

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