Art with small molecules competition

Cecil Simpson’s 'The Seascape' won first place in the WOW-2000 Art with Small Molecules Contest sponsored by the Small Molecule Special Interest Group (SIG) of the American Crystallographic Assn.

Submissions for the WOW-2001 competition are encouraged and can be sent to

The first place entry was a photomicrograph taken at 70X by Cecil Simpson (Lubbock, TX, USA) with a stereo Olympus microscope using cross polarization. The 'birefringent' crystals were obtained using small quantities of 9-fluorenone mixed together on a microscope slide and melted using an alcohol lamp. A cover glass was placed on the clear liquid and the material allowed to cool at room temperature. The resulting crystals were then photographed.

The second place entry, 'Nanodali', was a POVRAY drawing of acetylcholine rendered by Alastair Florence (Glasgow, Scotland) and submitted by Kenneth Shankland of Chilton.

The third place entry, 'T-shaped', was a Chem-Ray drawing submitted by Joseph W. Lauher (Stony Brook, NY, USA) showing the crystal packing of mercury(II) bis(4-pyridylacetylide) from a structure determined by Lauher’s graduate student Sean Curtis.

Herbert Bernstein