PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A new exhibit opens today at Philadelphia’s Academyof Natural Sciences. The exhibit, “Bugs…Outside the Box: Discover the Art within the Science” runs until January.

Sixteen scientifically accurate insect sculptures are within the exhibit. The only thing that is not correct is the inflated size — one piece, a colorful butterfly, has a wingspan of five feet. 

“Starting from the real specimen under the microscope I start studying, sort of (to learn) how to build,” says the artist Lorenzo Possenti of Pisa, Italy.

“They are in this vertical position pose, so you can see them face-to-face and that is important for communication.”

Live bugs are also on hand and on hands, like the stag beetle that Karen Verderame was holding in front of the stag beetle sculpture. She’s in charge of all the living insects at the museum.

“It gives visitors a chance to get up close with something that’s usually misunderstood and feared. So it helps them connect to those misunderstood creatures and actually find that they are quite interesting and beautiful.”

And through a window visitors can see entomologists involved in cataloging four million preserved insect specimens that will be placed into special cabinets to maintain them for years to come.

Reported by John McDevitt, KYW Newsradio 1060


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