01.09.2017 – 29.10.2017

Microsculpture Levon Biss - Photographs of insects

The work of the British photographer Levon Biss casts new light, in the truest sense of the word, on the exhibits of the entomological collection at the Museum of Natural History in Oxford. The size and resolution of the shots reveal the unexpected and often breath-taking beauty of the insects and explain their complex forms of adaptation, which entomologists call microsculpture.

The Microsculpture series was set up in collaboration between the Oxford University Museum of Natural History and Levon Biss. The biggest of the photographs on display are up to three meters in width.

Positioned next to the tiny insect specimens from the Natural History Museum Basel, the change of scale offered a unique visual experience and displayed the stunning diversity of insects' evolutionary adaptations.

Each Microsculpture is produced from around 8,000 individual photographs that are overlaid to produce a razor sharp image of the insect. Together with precise lighting, Levon Biss uses this technique to expose the complex and at the same time beautiful characteristics of an entire animal body. Not even a look down the microscope would reveal this comprehensive an overall picture.

As the first museum in German-speaking Switzerland to do so, the Natural History Museum Basel was showcasing a selection of the artist's photographs. The exhibition has previously appeared at the Nouveau Musée Bienne.