Colby students visit as part of Tiny Giants curriculum


Something exciting is happening at Colby College this fall semester. And, it's being inspired by Tiny Giants - Bigelow Laboratory's photographic art exhibit that makes the invisible world of marine microbes stunningly visible. Tiny Giants are on display at the Miller Library, Olin Science Library and the Davis Curricular Gallery in Colby College's Museum of Art now through December 17.

Students in six wide-ranging disciplines -- biology, environmental science, science, technology and policy, art, theater, and dance - are using Tiny Giants to inspire creativity, discussion, and learning. Colby professors are using the exhibit as a launching point in their fall courses as they integrate the concept of invisible marine microbes into their respective disciplines. The results of this semester-long exploration of marine microbes and the important role they play in planetary balance will be revealed at an event on Friday December 11 at Colby College. Plans range from a microbial-inspired dance to discussions about potential policy that could address climate change issues.

"Our idea behind the Tiny Giants images was to pique people's imaginations about the invisible creatures that we study that are vital to our very existence," said Dr. Benjamin Twining, director of research and education at Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences in East Boothbay, where the exhibit was created. "Their visual depiction provides the opportunity for people to also learn about marine microbes. We are delighted that Colby College decided to take this a step further and explore microbes from a variety of vantage points, from using them as a muse for sculptural inspiration to examining how microbial knowledge might be used to help guide policy positions."

"We're excited to show the images in the Tiny Giants exhibition on campus this fall" said Colby Provost and Dean of Faculty Lori G. Kletzer. "Colby's strategic partnership with Bigelow Laboratory provides world-class opportunities in marine science and climate science for our students--we knew that. And now the unique aesthetic for examining the natural microbial world through these photos completely reinforces the interdisciplinary approach that both our institutions value so highly."

Participating Colby faculty members incorporating Tiny Giants into semester activities include the Julian D. Taylor Associate Professor of Classics and Director of Colby's Center for the Arts and Humanities Kerill O'Neill, Professor of Science, Technology, and Society James R. Fleming, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies Denise A. Bruesewitz, Assistant Professor of Art Bradley A. Borthwick, Associate Professor of Art Tanya R. Sheehan, Associate Professor of Biology Catherine R. Bevier, and Technical Director in Theater and Dance John E. Ervin.

Mark your calendar for December 11^th at 5 pm to see what has transpired over the course of this semester at Colby College.