Bizarre Glass Sculptures of Deadly Viruses


The idea of dangerous beauty is nothing new, but UK-based artist Luke Jerram — whose work we spotted over on The Fox Is Black — takes the concept to extremes, crafting lovely glass sculptures of the world’s deadliest viruses as an alternative to “the artificially colored imagery we receive through the media.” His pieces — which magnify his subjects approximately one million times — are made with assistance from virologists from the University of Bristol, and have been featured in museums around the world, as well as medical journals and textbooks.

“Originally, I made a glass sculpture of HIV that people could hold in their hand and contemplate the global issues of what that virus is doing to the world,” Jerram explained back in a 2009. “What’s interesting is how the imagery of a virus, say HIV, has changed and developed as scientists’ understanding of the virus has improved, along with ways of visualizing/imaging a virus has improved with finer and finer detail.” Click through to take a look.

Luke Jerram, Swine Flu

Luke Jerram, E. coli

Luke Jerram, Malaria

Luke Jerram, HIV

Luke Jerram, Smallpox

Luke Jerran, T4 Bacteriophage

Luke Jerram, SARS