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Our collection

Spring has sprung, summer is heating up; insects and creepy crawlies are starting to buzz, wriggle, and flutter once again. Often these animals are treated as pests, yet bugs and insects play a very important role in our ecosystem. But more than that, many of these insects also have a long and important historical role in medical treatment and healthcare – a tradition that is continued in modern medicine. Here we explore some examples of these helpful bugs – all of which continue to be used by the NHS today!

This month a major Science Museum Group collection milestone has been reached: more than 150,000 objects now have an image attached in our online collection. Up from 5% in 2018, over a third of all objects in the collection are now visible online in a dramatic increase in accessibility. 

Assistant Curator Katie McNab explores the many selfies in the Science Museum Group Collection which predate the very term ‘selfie’, and how the act of taking a ‘selfie’ is an important part of self-expression and is ultimately a social activity.

Grayson Perry is among the many artists who have responded to the threat of SARS-CoV-2. Roger Highfield, Science Director, tells the remarkable story behind his ceramic pot, which is about to go on display at the Science Museum.

As part of the Science Museum Group’s COVID-19 Collecting Project we have acquired a portrait by Roxana Halls of Katie Tomkins, Mortuary and Post-Mortem Services Manager at West Herts Hospitals NHS Trust, created as part of the Portraits for NHS Heroes project in response to the pandemic.

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