Photography And Science Provide Revelations At Science Museum

Tabish Khan
By Tabish Khan Last edited 35 months ago
Photography And Science Provide Revelations At Science Museum ★★★☆☆ 3
This bouquet has been frozen with liquid nitrogen and fitted with an explosive. The artists then captures the moment of explosion. © Ori Gersht
This bouquet has been frozen with liquid nitrogen and fitted with an explosive. The artists then captures the moment of explosion. © Ori Gersht
This is the moment a bullet passes through a lemon. © Harold Edgerton
This is the moment a bullet passes through a lemon. © Harold Edgerton
Early x-rays were produced of many creatures including this pairing of an angelfish and a surgeon fish. © National Media Museum Bradford
Early x-rays were produced of many creatures including this pairing of an angelfish and a surgeon fish. © National Media Museum Bradford
60 exposures over a second capture the flight of a baton. © Harold Edgerton
60 exposures over a second capture the flight of a baton. © Harold Edgerton
One of eleven photographs, taken by Andrew Ainslie Common of the Orion Nebula (M42) using a 36-inch reflecting telescope with a silver-on-glass mirror in the garden at his home in Ealing, London.
There are many early cosmological photographs in this exhibition including this one of the Orion Nebula. © National Media Museum Bradford
This serpentine structure is a magnified view of a hummingbird's proboscis. © Carl Strüwe Archive Bielefeld Germany
This serpentine structure is a magnified view of a hummingbird's proboscis. © Carl Strüwe Archive Bielefeld Germany

Londonist Rating: ★★★☆☆

The Science Museum's media space played host to Drawn by Light earlier this year, an exhibition charting the entire history of photography. Its follow up marries history with photography once again, but this time with a scientific twist. It's a chronological show that has been four years in the making and charts the close relationship between the evolution of photographic techniques and scientific discovery, before ending with some contemporary works.

The early works would have been revolutionary at the time — to see a bee louse scaled up three hundred fold in 1857 would have shocked many viewers. There are early photographs of the moon and x-rays of various creatures including a rat and a snake.

Well known photographs feature, including Man Ray and Edward Muybridge with his animals and humans in motion. Harold Edgerton is well represented here with his famous split second photography of a drop of milk hitting the surface as well as capturing the moment a bullet passes through a lemon.

The exhibition does lose its way at the end with a contemporary collection which feels underdeveloped and not as exciting as the older works at the start at the exhibition. The one exception is the poster image for this show by Ori Gersht — a bouquet of flowers is frozen and detonated to create an explosion of colourful shards.

Despite this underwhelming ending it's still another good exhibition from the Media Space, which has only ever had strong shows.

Revelations: Experiments in Photography is on at The Media Space, Science Museum until 13 September. Tickets are £8 for adults, concessions available. Also on at Science Museum is Churchill's Scientists and the food inspired Cravings. The new information age gallery is yet another highlight at the Science Museum.

Nearby is another excellent edition of Wildlife Photographer of the Year, plus the Alexander McQueen blockbuster and the refurbished cast court at the V&A.

For more art to see in London, visit our 10 most talked about and top 10 openings for March.

Last Updated 21 March 2015