30 March 2013–19 May 2013
Special Exhibition Gallery, Ground Floor
Whether they fly, swim, crawl, wiggle or walk, we are endlessly fascinated and inspired by the creatures of our world. The Art of Science showcases the uncommon beauty produced from 300 years of exacting scientific observation and illustration.
As exploration and science have expanded our horizons across time and space, the ability to capture and communicate the truths held in nature have become increasingly important. Scientific artwork is as important and astonishing today as it was in the 18th century.
This exquisite exhibition presents the development of scientific art from Museum Victoria's seldom seen collection of artworks and rare books, and stunning images produced with microscopes, macro lenses, and computers.
See a display of the digitised images from the South Australian Museum's Entomology (insects) Collection as part of this exhibition. Around 8500 insect holotypes are being digitised in a massive project undertaken largely by volunteers. By making these specimens digitally accessible, we're making them easier for taxonomists to find and view, saving them time and resources.
The digitised images are one portion of what we contribute to the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA). This online, national database of all Australia's flora and fauna brings together data, images, digitised scientific literature and a range of analysis tools.
The South Australian Museum has so far contributed data about more than 200,000 specimens to the ALA. Getting this data online, along with digital information and specimens from other museums and partner institutions, provides a rich online picture of Australia's biodiversity.