I am delighted to be able to exhibit the work of Patrick Riley. He is an eminent scientist and a good friend of mine. I have always been captivated by the beauty of science images as I grew up amongst them. My father was a histopathologist, and we were surrounded by microphotographs of all kinds of human tissue stained by the purple and blue of haematoxylin-eosin dyes. For the untrained young boy’s eye, they appeared as wonderful abstract paintings. Afterwards, in medical school, I learned to interpret them, acquiring some kind of duplicity; not only were they beautiful but they contained important scientific information.
Scientific images have always captivated the public. Hooke’s 1665 book Micrographia showed images of giant insects that frightened and delighted; also, the previously unseen Protozoa discovered by Antonie van Leeuwenhoek producing engraved illustrations that are true works of art. Later scientific images were finally recognised as art images like the wonderful polarised light images of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) or the computer-generated images of fractals.
When Patrick showed me his thermograms, I was bowled over by the beauty of these images and quickly grasped the opportunity of exhibiting them. I hope you share my enthusiasm for Patrick’s work and my gratitude for visiting us.
Gabriel Alvarez Parra Artelectrico