Science becomes art at natural sciences institute

    Several months ago the Academy of Natural Sciences began framing images from its scientific archive and displaying them as pretty pictures. What Academy officials didn’t anticipate was people wanting to buy them, right off the walls.

    Several months ago the Academy of Natural Sciences began framing images from its scientific archive and displaying them as pretty pictures. What Academy officials didn’t anticipate was people wanting to buy them, right off the walls.

    Near the stairwell on the first floor of the Academy of Natural Sciences is a space that’s a little too wide for a hallway, too narrow for a room, but just right for an art gallery.
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    The walls are a dark gray and now display x-ray images of fish. You can see all their translucent bones in precise detail. Vice President Barabara Ceiga says that precision is necessary because these images are used by scientists to identify species.

    “At the Academy the number one question is, is that real?” Ceiga said. “The dinosaurs, the skeletons, the dioramas – most of it is real. People are so used to virtual everything in our lives – you can get any experience you want on your iPhone – that there’s become a real added focus on things that are real. We didn’t doctor this up – that’s a real skeleton in there.”

    Ceiga says a challenge was figuring out how to price the items, without an existing estimate of market value. She settled on a range of $75 to $150. The current exhibit will be up until August.

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