Journal of Biocommunication Showcase
Images from Science 3

A True Celebration of Contemporary and
Extraordinary Images of Science


On October 12, 2002, the first Images from Science (IFS) exhibition opened in the William Harris Gallery at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Professor Michael Peres and Professor Emeritus Andrew Davidhazy created the project with the intent of promoting a wider appreciation of scientific photography by showcasing beautiful, data-rich - but rarely seen - images drawn from oceanography, geology, biology, engineering, medicine, and physics in the traveling exhibition.

At a professional conference in April 2018, the idea to create an Images from Science 3 exhibition was discussed. Images from Science 3 aspired to build on the successes of Images from Science 1 and 2. Images from Science 1 was launched at the infancy of the internet and contained 59 photographs. It traveled to 22 venues in seven countries until 2007, when it was retired. Because of the success of IFS 1, Davidhazy and Peres produced Images from Science 2, which premiered in the fall of 2008. It was displayed in 13 venues before being lost in shipping from the United Kingdom to the Netherlands in 2014. Both exhibitions were produced as experiments to explore the power of the internet as the sole tool used to advertise, identify, and ultimately display some of the world's most interesting photographs of science.

Much has changed since those exhibitions were mounted. The explosion of new imaging methods and technologies has been nothing short of extraordinary. Coupled with new optical techniques and more advanced imaging software, almost anything is now possible in the creation of images for science. The dynamic release of new imaging equipment including the smartphone, along with the explosive adoption of social media, such as Twitter and Instagram, has made it possible for images of all types to be shared with worldwide audiences. One could make a compelling argument that imaging has become a science unto itself and is an integral part of the work of every contemporary organization, science image maker, and research center. NIH, NSF, NASA, and many other important organizations share massive amounts of data on various platforms, keeping their followers engaged with their messaging, and research. Similar to its predecessors, Images from Science 3 was organized to celebrate the production of beautiful images featuring science. At its core mission, the project explored the interface of science, technology, art, design, and communication. Science images, unlike most other genres of images, rarely find their way into art galleries. With little more than the enthusiasm to re-explore the project, the organizers reached out to many organizations, seeking sponsors, collaborators, a gallery space, and a publisher.

Professors Michael Peres, Norman Barker, Ted Kinsman, Bob Rose are the organizers of IFS 3. They have enjoyed long careers in this unique field as photographers, but also as authors, educators, and industry leaders. Because of their interest in science images, and along with noted RIT professor of graphic design Chris Jackson, they collaborated to produce the third installation of the exhibition, sharing images created by those who work at the frontier of contemporary science.

The organizers of IFS 3 hoped to identify 75 examples of images that revealed science in new and unique ways. Similar to past IFS projects, they used the internet as the primary voice for promotion. Different than IFS 1 and 2, this exhibition features moving images, animations, and illustrations, as well as photographs. An international panel of seven experts from around the world selected 81 images. Creating an international exhibition on a tight budget created some unique challenges. The success of the exhibition required constant innovation and problem solving. The full exhibit can be seen on line;

Image solicitation began September 1, 2018, and concluded January 15, 2019. At the end of the collection phase, more than 380 files from 130 contributors who lived in 19 countries had been submitted for consideration. Judging was accomplished online. The panel of IFS 3 judges included photography editors, scientists, physicians, science photographers, and business owners, who live in Europe, Australia, and North America. You can find more in the section "The Judges" on . Each judge received minimal instructions and was asked to select images for inclusion based on aesthetics, uniqueness, degree of difficulty in making, and myriad other hard-to-quantify subjective metrics. In addition, each judge selected their favorite image for special commendation; each of these images received a Juror Selection Award. Judging took place from February 1 to February 28, 2019. Seventy one contributors from 15 countries were invited to submit their images for the Exhibition.

IFS 3 is presented in an exhibition catalog, a traveling print exhibition, and an online gallery. The Images from Science 3 traveling exhibition opened on November 1, 2019, at the RIT City Art Space in downtown Rochester, New York. Following the first installation, it traveled to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. The exhibit is available for travel to other venues. The traveling exhibit schedule is starting to fill. If there is an interest in bringing the Images of Science 3 exhibition to your university or gallery space, please contact, Norm Barker,


From the organizers:

The organizers would like to take this opportunity to formally thank the Association of Medical Illustrators and the BioCommunications Association for their support of this project. We would also like to thank RIT Press for the beautiful catalog that was designed to go along with the traveling exhibit. Many individuals and organizations embraced the opportunity to support this exhibition including Rochester Institute of Technology; RIT Press; the RIT City Art Space; Johns Hopkins University and School of Medicine; the RIT Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Science; Carl Zeiss Microscopy, LLC; Service Photo, Inc.; Science Source Images, Inc.; the RIT School of Art; the RIT School of Photographic Arts and Sciences; and Histolite. Without their generosity and advice, this project would not have gotten off the ground.

Michael Peres,
Norm Barker,
Ted Kinsman,
Bob Rose, and
Chris Jackson

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