[Jakarta, LTTW] It’s about time we had some good news in 2020, amidst all the disasters occuring around us. Scientists discovered the world’s longest animal; the 150-ft siphonophore, a string-like deep-sea predator. This is good news, not only because this finding has added to nature’s list of wonders, but it also a gentle reminder on how little we know about our home – let alone the universe.
There’s a scientific illustration book entitled “Art Forms in Nature” by Ernst Haeckel which depicted the mysteriousness shrouding the siphonophore – the “hidden” beauty of nature. Although it is an old book, the content within is undoubtedly timeless. You can clarify this yourself just by looking at the examples of his portfolio below.
A scientific illustration / drawing is contrary to the artistic drawing, as the its purpose is to record structures and specific details of living beings visually; something of which occurs most often in the biological sciences. Hence, unlike artistic illustrations, the scientific illustration depicts a total absence of aesthetics, emotions, ideas and multi-interpretational possibilities in the implementation and perception – in other words, it is dictated purely by nature. To create a scientific illustration, one must be highly curious, perfect technical drawing skills, pay considerable attention to detail, and perhaps most importantly, possess an awe-inspiring sense of wonder towards the natural world.
According to Wikipedia, Ernst Haeckel was a German zoologist, naturalist, philosopher, physician, professor, marine biologist, and artist who discovered, described and named thousands of new species, mapped a genealogical tree interconnecting all life forms, and coined much biological terminology, example including ecology and phylum among others.
As for Listen to the World, Ernst Haeckel is simply a humble man who surrenders to the majesty of nature.