Art of Science Competition Shows That Science Can be Beautiful

Rick Wagner, Physics. Grids. First Place, Student Category

This spring, UC San Diego’s Science & Engineering Library invited UCSD faculty, staff, and students to submit digital images that portrayed the artistic side of science and engineering. The images submitted ranged from nano corn fields, forests, and gardens to visual demonstrations of supersonic turbulence, fire whirls, and fans of flame. Also submitted were striking images of data simulating the evolution of galaxy clusters and the UCSD logo depicted using 1 million E. coli cells. One image (Nano Party) was created in celebration of UC San Diego’s 50th anniversary.

The award winners for the Faculty and staff category are:

  • 1st place - Tadel Matevz, Department of Physics (Cha0ss Begets Order II)
  • 2nd place - Adam Burgasser, Department of Physics (Stellar Orbits Dragonfly)
  • 3rd place - David Rideout, Department of Mathematics (The First 10-42 Seconds)

The award winners for the Student category are:

Tadel Matevz, Department of Physics. Cha0ss Begets Order II. First Place, Faculty and Staff Category


  • 1st place - Rick Wagner, Physics (Grids)
  • 2nd place - Christopher Doran, Electrical and Computer Engineering (A Tapestry of Silicon)
  • 3rd place - Kim Wright, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (The View from Above) Honorable Mention – Alireza Kargar, ECE Electrical and Computer Engineering (Nano Garden)

The judges of the Art of Science competition included:

  • Mary Linn Bergstrom, Head of the Science & Engineering Library
  • Declan Fleming, Head of the Library Information Technology Department
  • Lia Friedman, Head of Public Services, Arts Library
  • Elizabeth Jenkins, Professor of Physics
  • Susan Shepherd, Head of Outreach, Science & Engineering Library

Kim Wright, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. The View from Above. Third place, Student Category

All images submitted in the competition are currently exhibited in the Science & Engineering Library in the Geisel Library building. The images can also be viewed on the S&E Library’s Flickr site:

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