Envisioning Science: Photographs by Felice Frankel

Exploring the intersection of art and science.

Cantor Fitzgerald Galler: November 2 - Sunday, December 2, 2007.

An opening reception for was held Friday, November 2 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the gallery, and a tea and talk with Felice Frankel was held Monday, November 12 in the Sharpless Auditorium of the Koshland Integrated Natural Sciences Center (KINSC).

In addition to Envisioning Science, there was be a concurrent exhibit featuring scientific images and text drawn from research conducted by Haverford’s students and faculty. A self-guided tour of the KINSC’s art/imaging holdings was also be available.

Felice Frankel’s work was presented digitally on six 42-inch flat panel LCD monitors, which will run DVD loops of her work and accompanying text. A photographic print of her image “Frankel Ferrofluid,” which is owned by Haverford’s Science Library was also on display.

Of her work, Frankel says, “Like equations in mathematics and structural formulae in chemistry, these images are intended to communicate ideas. They are a visual representation of physical phenomena revealing hours of scientists’ thinking, years of preparation, and lifetimes of exploration.” She calls the images products of a collaborative process, as, she says, “I worked with scientists who embraced my sometimes never-ending questions. Together, we discovered the power these visual representations of ideas bring to communication and clarification.”

Felice Frankel is a Senior Research Fellow in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, where she heads the Envisioning Science program at Harvard’s Initiative in Innovative Computing (IIC). She is also a research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Working in collaboration with scientists and engineers, Frankel has seen her work published in more than 300 journal articles, covers, and other publications. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship and has received grants from the National Science Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, and the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation. She is also the 2007 winner of the prestigious international Lennart Nilsson Award for Scientific Photography.

Frankel’s latest book, Envisioning Science: The Design and Craft of the Science Image, is now available in paperback. She is also co-author, with Harvard chemist George M. Whitesides, of On the Surface of Things: Images of the Extraordinary in Science. Her column “Sightings” appears regularly in American Scientist magazine.

Both the Frankel exhibit and the Haverford student/faculty exhibition of images is presented in conjunction with the “Imaging in Science” faculty development seminar.

Exhibits and seminar are made possible with support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the John B. Hurford ’60 Humanities Center, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Phillips Distinguished Visitors Program.

The faculty sponsor of the Frankel exhibit, Associate Professor of Physics and Director of the KINSC Suzanne Amador Kane, worked with Amy Slaton, a historian of science from Drexel University, to create Art or Data, an exhibit of 12 works and accompanying essays by Haverford science students and faculty that reflect the many ways imaging is used in scientific research on campus. Faculty members represented in the exhibit include Karin Akerfeldt (Chemistry), John Dougherty (Computer Science), Rob Fairman (Biology), Jerry Gollub (Physics), Rachel Hoang (Biology), Peter Love (Physics), Nick Ouellette (Physics Postdoctoral Fellow), Bruce Partridge (Physics/Astronomy), Jenni Punt (Biology), and John Wagner (Biology).

The featured students are Byron Drury '08, Emily Hinchcliff '08, Andrew Kim '10, Justin Meyerowitz '09, Andy O'Hara '09, Rowan Spivey '07, and Ari Wassner '00.