Amazing Science*, a "pulp" and science exhibition




Read the press pack (799.7 ko) 

In a nod to the Sci-Fi culture (1) of 1930's American magazines, the Amazing Science exhibition brought to you by Inserm and CEA takes you on an exploratory journey into uncharted territory, on the frontiers of pulp culture, science fiction and scientific research.

Presented for the first time at the 2012 Nantes Utopiales, this new exhibition invites you to delve into the mysteries of life, matter and the universe. The Amazing Science exhibition has set itself a dual challenge: to promote discovery and understanding through enjoyment and to encourage explanation and learning through transformation.

Reinventing Amazing Stories

With the Amazing Science exhibition, Inserm and CEA continue to follow the adventurous trail blazed by Amazing Stories, the American sci-fi magazine first published in 1926. Back then, Hugo Gernsback’s publication regaled its readers with "scientific romances" complete with shock graphics, bright colours, striking typography and mysterious perspectives.

Opening on 7 November 2012, the Amazing Science exhibition will breathe fresh life into those old magazine covers - 20th Century science fiction reinvented by the 21st Century science. Claude Ecken, science fiction writer, comic script writer, literary critic, broadcaster and public reader (2), will join in this revival of "science romances" with a series of short science fiction stories taking visitors on a 26-picture literary journey.

Science and pulp culture

As Maison d'Ailleurs Director Marc Atallah reminds us, "the term 'pulp' (or 'pulp magazine') refers to the cheap publications printed on poor quality paper in the United States during the first half of the 20th Century." The exhibition revives the "pulp" look through a blend of scientific research, creative writing and popular culture. From the infinitely small to the infinitely large, the most advanced areas of science are now the realm of unexpected encounters with the real and the imaginary worlds. Each of the exhibition panels features scientific visuals based on a specific research area.

"The Amazing Science exhibition aims to explore scientific research by breaking - through a set of new cultural codes - with science's occasionally inaccessible image, and by reaching out to the popular imagination," says Claire Lissalde, project leader and head of the Inserm audiovisual unit.

(1) Science-Fiction
(2) Mission Caladan (Editions Le Pommier 2010)
Au réveil il était midi (L'Atalante 2012)
Femtopetas (Forthcoming from Bélial)

Read the complete press pack ( o) (799.7 ko)

Know more

Practical information

A "pulp" and science exhibition organised by Inserm and CEA
From 7 to 12 November 2012
Nantes Utopiales / International Festival of Science Fiction
La Cité Nantes Events Center, 5 rue de Valmy, 44000 Nantes
Public: for age 7 and over

Amazing Science, an exhibition designed and produced by the Inserm and CEA communications departments
Project Manager, Claire Lissalde, Head of the Audiovisual Unit at Inserm
Coordination for CEA, Florence Klotz
Based on an original idea by Eric Dehausse, Inserm iconographer
Proofreading by Maryse Cournut of Inserm
Short stories by Claude Ecken
Art Direction Alexander Cheyrou
Science Editor Charles Muller

Pulp illustrations from the Agence Martienne and the Maison d'Ailleurs collections.
Science photos from the Inserm Serimedis* image bank and the CEA Photo Library.
*Serimedis is an Inserm image bank open to the public and accessible online at: The catalogue contains over 14,000 photographs and 1,500 videos.

Press contacts

Juliette Hardy -

Tuline Laeser, tel.: 01 64 50 20 97 -

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