An Artsy Look At Science : The Picture Show There is beauty in science. There is information in art. Merging those two worlds could bring new insights into how the natural world works.
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An Artsy Look At Science

There is beauty in science. There is information in art. Merging those two worlds could bring new insights into how the natural world works.

At least that's the idea behind the 2009 International Science & Engineering Visualization Challenge. Its goal was to encourage people to find creative ways to move science and scientific findings away from the printed page or the computer screen, where it typically resides, and toward something more visual.

For example, let's say you want to know how human lung cells interact with their surroundings. You could take a picture of what you see through the microscope. But what if you took 75,000 cable zip ties and used them to create an 11.5-foot-tall sculpture that represents those interactions in three dimensions? That's what the scientists who made one of the winning entries for this year's challenge did. You get to decide whether it is aesthetically pleasing, and scientifically evocative.

The competition was co-sponsored by Science magazine and the National Science Foundation. You can see all the winners, and find out more about the International Science & Engineering Visualization Challenge, on NSF's Web site.

Have an idea? Pitch it!

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