The Leeds City Museum presents a spectacular series of high-tech macro photographs of some of its extensive collection of insects to give a very different perspective on the smallest inhabitants of the animal kingdom.
Carefully captured by specialist photographer Ed Hall during a series of sessions at Leeds Discovery Center, the large enlarged images show insect species from across the planet in intricate detail, which are on display alongside actual specimens from the collection. .
They include the magnificent Goliath beetle, among the largest insects in the world, whose striking markings can usually be spotted in the tropical rainforests of Africa, and the death’s head sphinx, which has the unusual ability to emit a loud chirping if irritated.
They appear alongside a beautiful image of a bumblebee, whose brightly colored fluffy hairs help make them essential pollinators for the ecosystem.
Milo Phillips, assistant curator of entomology at Leeds Museums and Galleries, worked on the city’s insect collection catalog alongside a team of volunteers. The exhibition, which runs until November 14, shows some of the most striking specimens they have come across.
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He said: “Insects are a fascinating and spectacularly diverse part of the animal kingdom and they always elicit such a passionate reaction from the people who love and hate them.
“What we aim to do in this exhibition is to help all visitors see them in a whole different way, exploring the great variety of fantastic shapes, sizes and colors that can be found in the world. insects.
“We presented a mix of specimens from the collection – some that people will recognize, and some that they may never have seen before and the prints themselves were produced as large as possible so that visitors can truly immerse themselves in the intricacies of these remarkable creatures.
The free exhibition is part of a Leeds Museums and Galleries project called Dead Inspiring, which aims to empower young women to pursue scientific careers through a series of events, academic engagement programs and d ‘exhibitions.
The project, launched last year, showcases the museum department’s entomology collection in the hope that shining a spotlight on the collection will encourage a whole new generation of scientists and conservationists and show that entomology is a topic that everyone should participate in.
Mainly housed in the state-of-the-art Leeds Discovery Center, the collection fills nearly 100 cabinets and over 1,500 drawers with a spectacular array of bees, beetles, insects and butterflies.
Jonathan Pryor, Executive Member of Leeds City Council for Economy, Culture and Education, said: “Our collection in Leeds is truly amazing, as are the endlessly imaginative ways the teams on site find to engage and inspire visitors.