NatureVolve digital magazine - issue 1

Page 38

Scicomm The spindle consists of microtubules that connect to the chromosomes and, by growing and shrinking, provide the forces required to separate the duplicated chromosomes from each other. While the chromosomes move to opposite poles, the center of the cell contracts, pinching off the two new-born daughter cells. What do you think is the value in combining science and art? For me, art and science complement each other and are similar in many respects, yet they are so very different on other


levels. Let me explain: In science, you address problems by forming a hypothesis and following a sense of logic. You need to properly plan and control your experiments. In art, you have the freedom to go with your instincts. Art allows space for playfulness, creativity and for spontaneous exploration that science does not. Science can be abstract, whereas art is inherently visual. Art therefore has two functions – it balances my brain doing scientific work, but it also has the power to translate science and thus to communicate complex and abstract ideas in a simplified visual way.

Bio Leah Bury I am Leah, a cell biologist working as postdoc at the Whitehead Institute in Cambridge, MA (USA). I am also an artist, and combining my two passions, I create unique, science inspired art.

Above: ‘Metaphase’ by Leah Bury. © 2018 Leah Bury

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Above: ‘Prometaphase’ by Leah Bury. © 2018 Leah Bury

Final thoughts While both the aesthetic aspects and the appeal of solving a puzzle have engaged Leah Bury in her studies, through her illustrations, she shares the magic of natural processes in cell biology, which we cannot see with the naked-eye. Here, we can take home the idea that although art and science are fundamentally different, the two areas can balance eachother out, as art can be a powerful communicator to demonstrate hidden processes occuring in nature.

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