Entomology, Department of


Date of this Version


Document Type



Master of Science Degree Project, Department of Entomology, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 2022.


Copyright © 2022 Paula M. Courtney


This exhibition is a gallery of original mixed-media paintings by Paula M. Courtney intended to generate curiosity and appreciation for the field of entomology. It is human nature to fear what we do not know or understand. Art can be an effective catalyst for awareness creation and inspiration towards further education. Subjects depicted within these works of art were carefully selected with a goal of maintaining interest in an audience with emotions ranging from neutral to strong dislike towards insects and arachnids. This exhibition as a whole is designed to bridge the gap between a negative perception of insects and arachnids by presenting them within a unique and colorful medium that draws attention and promotes relaxation or positive emotions in the viewer. Positive exposure to this subject matter may in turn promote further learning and appreciation.

The exhibition begins with works including Danaus plexippus and species that are well-received in the public eye. These pieces capture attention and leave the viewer wanting to see more. The bright colors and unique painting technique remain relatively consistent throughout the exhibition, creating unity. The exhibition proceeds with more controversial insect subjects including some pest species and insects that spark mixed emotions in many viewers. Each individual painting, as well as the order in which they are viewed is intentional and contributes to the overall viewer experience.

Included in

Entomology Commons