Catalyst, MSU SciComm art exhibition winners announced

Article courtesy of MSU SciComm, Michigan State University’s Science Communication Organization. The voting period for the exhibition has closed but you can view the submissions here.

The exhibition included science-themed artwork that reached 29 different countries over the two week voting period, according to a survey conducted by MSU Sci Comm. After voting for your favorite art pieces visitors were able to fill out an optional demographic survey. Of the 104 responses, the survey concluded that 88% of visitors were not affiliated with MSU and 40% were not artists, scientists, or educators.


Announcing the Catalyst Winners

It is our pleasure to announce that Jonathan Stone, Science Notes, Elena Gonzalez Garcia, Josh Urban Davis, and Jacob Steenwyk are the first place winners in their respective categories! Jonathan’s works Phase and Transition won him first place in the photography category.


MSU Sci Comm Online Science Art Exhibition

Like many events this year, Spartans are opening their computer screens and tuning in virtually. No exception to this is the Annual Sci-Art Exhibition hosted by MSU SciComm. This year includes pieces from many MSU students, as well as artists throughout the US, Canada, Puerto Rico, the UK, India, and China. The subject matters of the art pieces are equally as diverse and range from climate change, environmental preservation, medical illustration, and even COVID-19. There will surely be an interesting topic for everyone!

The planning committee has selected this year’s theme as “Catalyst.” It was by chance that this theme was selected before one of the biggest catalysts in our lives thus far, the COVID-19 pandemic. Things are changing on a daily basis and the pandemic has made people’s lives much different than ever expected. Science artists have been accustomed to presenting their work in a gallery as a way to communicate their methods and results with the lay public. This art exhibition is a great alternative to formal art shows as a way to unite artists with the public in times where it’s otherwise challenging. Furthermore, it provides artists the opportunity to widen their reach simply by sharing the exhibition link. And, of even greater importance during the current election season, this exhibition is a great way to communicate science with the political and science policy world.

Organizers Chelsie Boodoo, Brittany Ladson, Daniel Puentes and Nick Young are all excited to share science art from all over the world with the students at Michigan State. At this time in history, the communication of science is of tantamount importance. It is best said by Chief Scientist Sir Mark Walport of the UK Royal Society, “Science is not finished until it’s communicated.” It is MSU SciComm’s goal is to do just that! The field of science has been under recent attack, and this exhibition is a great way to connect and educate members outside of the science community with current scientific events and breakthroughs from across the globe.

One of the organizers, Brittany Ladson, is a 3rd-year medical school student in the College of Osteopathic Medicine and is the Vice President of Operations for MSU Sci Comm. She states, “Sometimes, there is a disconnect between medicine and greater STEM. Graduate Ph.D. students and medical students don’t have much interaction during their training years, so sharing this exhibition is a great way to connect both groups and to learn from each other.” Furthermore, Sci Comm President and Founder Chelsie Boodoo added, “I am proud that we were able to connect with international science artists and that we will be able to still spread the beauty of science while inspiring others.” This sentiment is echoed by Nick Young, SciComm’s Vice President of Marketing, who added, “While we had originally planned for an in-person exhibition, we’re excited about the affordances a virtual exhibition allows. We’re really looking forward to sharing our work with the local community and now, the global community.”

If you are interested in checking out what Sci Comm has to offer stay tuned to the MSU Sci Comm social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) for updates!