Center Gallery, Main Level:


Now celebrating its 44th year, the Nikon Small World Competition is widely regarded as the leading forum to recognize proficiency and photographic excellence of photography taken under the microscope. To select the winners, competition judges analyzed entries from all over the world.

First place was awarded to Emirati photographer Yousef Al Habshi, who sees the eyes as the windows to stunning insect artwork and research. The 2018 winning image captures part of the compound eyes and surrounding greenish scales of an Asian Red Palm weevil. This type of Metapocyrtus subquadrulifer beetle is typically less than 11 mm (0.43 in) in size and is found in the Philippines.

According to Al Habshi, “through photomicrography we can find a whole new, beautiful world which hasn’t been seen before. It’s like discovering what lies under the Ocean’s surface.”

In 2018, the competition received nearly 2,500 entries from scientists and artists in 89 countries. Small World is widely regarded as the leading forum for recognizing the art, proficiency and photographic excellence involved in photomicrography. The submissions are evaluated on originality, informational content, technical proficiency, and visual impact.

Art Mezanine:


For as long as I can remember, I have loved books.

When I was younger, I would make my grandfather re-read the same Mother Goose book to me so often that I had it memorized cover to cover before I could even read. Even now, I read the entire Harry Potter series over every year. The magic of stories
has never grown old.

My grandfather was always a “kid at heart.”  I loved that about him. He taught me a lot. One of the best lessons from him, which I realized after having my son, is that stories can come to life. Dreams are real. You can find buried treasure in the backyard. All you need to do is believe and use your imagination, and a whole new world could open up to you.

I thought this collection would be a great way to use these lessons. My hope is to bring to life my love of books and the magic of the stories they contain.

Upper Level:


Connecticut native Michael Florio has a huge passion for photography, art, science, and technology. His love of these subjects has brought him through a rabbit hole of wonder and amazement. His desire to share the incredible aspects of our universe with others is captured through a dynamic study of sunsets and the fascinating reasons why we experience the glorious colors in a twilight sky.

He wishes to reignite the imagination in adults and inspire young people, whether it is through the art of photography, exploring the cosmos through a telescope, or creating an at-home science project.