Virtual eye and vision gallery

We take an historical and an artistic look at the most sophisticated optical instrument of all: The human eye itself, as well as the 'men of vision' who sought to explain the mystery of sight...

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Explore the following pages in this virtual gallery

Medical imEYEging - The work of Michael Kelly

Blurring the boundaries between medical photography and art.

The glaucomatous eye

The pressure is on...

Optography and optograms

What is the last thing we see before death? For a long time scientists have wondered whether, since the eye is like a camera, it might be possible to capture an image of our final vision. Derek Ogbourne, an artist in whose work eyes are a common recurring motif, has been using the resources of the BOA Museum and Library to explore the story of this fascinating though macabre science.

Men of vision

The study of vision has attracted many great thinkers over the centuries, not all of them scientists in the strictest sense, but we can call them all 'visionaries'.

Appearance of the eye

How the eye can be made-up or altered cosmetically.

Symbolism of the eye

The eye is one of the most powerful symbols known to many cultures. It can be an indicator of good, evil, protection, wisdom, knowledge, secrecy and mystery. Here we look at items as diverse as a decorative Spanish pharmacy jar and Dogu sculptures from ancient Japan.


For the seeing fingers of blind people.