Where Science Meets Art

Orit Bechar and Yossi Shohat
"Photographed at the Weizmann Institute of Science"
Raoul and Graziella de Picciotto Building for Scientific and Technical Support, 2nd floor

Hundreds, even thousands of people enter the Weizmann Institute of Science every single day. All are well aware of the importance of aesthetics and beauty to Institute life. The meticulous landscaping, the saplings alongside mature trees, the diverse flora, and painstaking cultivation – all these expand the heart and inspire us to create works that meet the high standards of the environment in which we live and work.

But few of us get a peek into the “backstage” of the Institute’s natural life. Though indiscernible to most of us, the secret life of the campus, it turns out, is bustling with dozens of bird, insect, reptile, and even mammal species. The Operations Division’s Yossi Shochat has come to know this covert world; armed with a camera, he ventures out almost every day, at unusual hours, to meet and photograph the creatures living among us. Some of Yossi’s surprising photographs are displayed in this exhibition.

Orit Bachar, from the Division of Information Systems, also presents in her photographs unknown and exotic aspects of the campus. Her photographs in the exhibition were taken on foggy days. The landscapes we are so familiar with suddenly take on a different look, a different cover – and a new meaning, with the scenery devoid of humans, and a thick fog obscuring some of the most recognizable of contours.

Combined, these two groups of photographs suggest, humbly, that there may be more than meets the eye on campus; that there are other aspects to the Institute than those we already know, and that we should perhaps all try to reveal moments and pictures beyond the ordinary.