Support Aeon

Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.
But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Become a Friend for $5 a month or Make a one-off donation

The diatomist

4 minutes

Amazing hidden worlds become visible through a forgotten Victorian art form

Diatoms, a form of algae, are invisible to the naked eye. But when placed under a microscope, the symmetrical organisms offer grand displays of nature’s remarkable diversity of colour and form. The Diatomist follows Klaus Kemp, one of the last remaining practitioners of the Victorian art form of diatom arrangement, as he hunts down specimens in the UK’s ditches, troughs and gutters to create new displays. His wondrous creations offer a lovely portal into the world of Victorian art and its intersection with science, of aesthetics entwined with investigation.

Director: Matthew Killip

Support Aeon

Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.

But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Become a Friend for $5 a month or Make a one-off donation

Essay/History of Science
Science is broken

Perverse incentives and the misuse of quantitative metrics have undermined the integrity of scientific research

Siddhartha Roy & Marc A Edwards

Essay/Physics
Why trees don’t ungrow

The cliché that life transcends the laws of thermodynamics is completely wrong. The truth is almost exactly the opposite

Jeremy England