The humble Petri dish has played host to countless scientific marvels over the years. In many cases, all the action transpired on a microscopic scale. Thankfully for us, Klari Reis’s experiments are visible to the naked eye.
The San Francisco–based artist is currently in month three of “The Daily Dish 2013,” a project that has her painting one Petri dish every day for the entire calendar year. The tiny plexiglass canvasses afford Reis more creative freedom than you might expect–while all the entries are vaguely biological, they cover a range of colors, textures, and forms.
“Prince,” from February 2, looks like a delicate violet flower, or maybe a scrap of one of his outfits from the Purple Rain era pressed for preservation. “Silver Dollar Tan” from later that month looks like a colorized close-up of a lunar crater. “Disproportionate Pizza from the Unknown,” January 19, is like a flat, concentric version of one of those bottles of colored sand you’d carefully layer when you were a kid.
For such miniature works, they pack a surprising visual punch. But then, this is hardly Reis’s first encounter with the medium. Back in 2009, the artist made the same dish-a-day resolution–you can see all 365 of those dishes here–and other of her works have included dozens of carefully arranged Petri paintings. They’re not really science, but for us right-brain creative types, they might as well be.