Art for science communication

In 2020 we learnt more than ever that science communication is fundamental.

Science and the scientific language are often inaccessible and fake news become viral more easily than actual scientific facts.

During 2020 a couple of interesting and illuminating papers on a new and fun way to do effective science communication were published.

Illingworth is a Senior Lecturer in Science Communication at Manchester Metropolitan University and the founder of the blog “The poetry of Science“. In the blog he translates scientific papers into poetry to make science accessible to everyone, not only to the experts of a specific field.

Scientists are often described as cerebral and rational people, who rarely get in touch with their emotions. At some level it is true: scientists face failure daily because of failed experiments, papers rejected and grants unapproved, just to name a few. It is important not to get too emotional and understand that success often arrives after several failures.

But it is important to remember that scientists are human being, with feelings and (often) a very emotional and sensitive character. Poetry, as well as other form of arts like music, painting and dance can be interesting ways to let scientists to get in touch with their emotions.

During the last year I interviewed 49 women working in a STEM field and involved in science communication. Some of them use art as a way to communicate science.

Have a look to the works of Pauline, Sydni, dr. Dorotea and Monika.

Do you use art to communicate science? Do you enjoy it?

References:

Illingworth (2020), “Creative communication – using poetry and games to generate dialogue between scientists and nonscientists”, https://doi.org/10.1002/1873-3468.13891

Rowe (2020), “Poetry and verse: An ideal medium for scientific communication?”, https://doi.org/10.1016/S1359-6446(00)01556-7

3 comments

  1. Yes! I am a scientist and an artist. This year has certainly shown how important it is for the general public to understand science. The question is how can we, scientists, get them interested enough to start asking the right questions and digging deeper. I believe that translating science into art can make more people pause and wonder how things work and put in the time to learn more about nature. Personally, I love neuroscience and use it as the main source of inspiration for my art.

    Like

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