Artis Micropia: An Invisible World

I tend to find unique things from unique sources. As a follower of Atlas Obscura, I discovered their Micropia Exhibit in Amsterdam. Micropia is a zoo of sorts, it has a collection of the most powerful, successful, and at the same time, smallest life on earth: microbes.

This exhibit focuses on the bacteria and microbes that live on and among us every day. Each human bears one and a half kilograms of microbes. These microorganisms are everywhere and determine how our world looks; this mircoscopic zoo sets out to show how interesting and beautiful the invisible world that surrounds us can be.

There are Petri dishes filled with artfully grown cultures, showcasing the naturally occurring designs. At first glance, it may seem moldy and gross but then you zoom in and see the beautiful colors, patterns, and shapes that these microbes display.

Get a body scan and learn which you're microorganisms are on you. Couples can share a kiss see how many microbes you and your partner exchange. The museum has an almost dank feel; the lighting comes from the displays. There is a microbiology lab on site that grows and cares for the microbes on display. There are 3D microscopes viewers made especially for this museum that can show microbes live or you can chat with a lab technician that are both zookeepers and docents.

Micropia was disgustingly beautiful and eye-opening. If you are OCD or germaphobe, then skip this exhibit, or you’ll want to scrub every inch of yourself and your surroundings! You’ll look at the world differently, but ultimately humans, plants, animals, and microbes cannot manage without each other.

I hope you enjoyed this Micropia tour! If you'd like to check out this wouderfully weird exhibit, head over to in the Artis Royal Zoo, located in Plantage area of Centrum. It's open everday, Sunday through Wednesday from 9 am to 6 pm and Thursday through Saturday from 9 am to 8 pm. The cost ranges from €14 for childern ten years and up, € 12 for childern from three to nine years, to free admission for children under the age of three.


- steph

#Amsterdam #Expat #ArtsCulture #Art #Micropia #Artis

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