Lost Beauty II: The Art of Museum Stories

The Buffalo Museum of Science (BMS) has more than 750,000 objects and artifacts in its collection. While those numbers are staggering, what’s also impressive is one artist’s mission to curate 15 items that he has managed to artistically capture in an exhibit titled Lost Beauty II: The Art of Museum Stories.

For the first time ever, experience the Museum’s Collection through the eyes of an artist.

The artist, Alberto Rey, is hoping to inspire people to look at the museum’s objects in a more intimate way – through the eyes of an artist, while finding their own wellsprings of inspiration in the process.

By doing this, Rey wants to get viewers of the artifacts – and the works of art – contemplating their nature in different ways. By examining the paintings, people are able to see alternate perspectives that they might not have grasped by merely observing the artifacts.

Museums are sometimes described as the storehouses of the human condition.

The 750,000 objects and artifacts – destined to sit on the shelves, hang on the walls, and occupy atmospheric controlled storage areas at the Museum for the duration of their existence – have never been featured in this sort of artistic capacity. Now, 15 of those coveted and catalogued articles are making their auspicious appearance at the Museum. 

“We are thrilled to finally be able to present this beautiful and carefully curated exhibit. Lost Beauty II shines a light on the Buffalo Society of Natural Science’s (BSNS) significance as a collecting institution. Alberto Rey’s paintings help us tell the rich stories that make these items significant stories that, without such close inspection and context, may easily go unnoticed at first glance,” says BSNS President and CEO, Marisa Wigglesworth. “This exhibit will appeal to those with interests in science, history, and world cultures just as much as it will to art enthusiasts, making it a can’t-miss attraction in Buffalo this fall.”

Each of the 15 items on display are accompanied by a large painting by Rey.

Lost Beauty II: The Art of Museum Stories is the second in a series for Rey – Lost Beauty I was on display at UB’s Anderson Gallery in 2019 and featured Rey’s The Extinct Birds Project. This latest series is three years in the making, partially due to the pandemic, which delayed the opening of the highly anticipated exhibit at the Museum, which runs through December 31, 2021.

“I have always loved science and art and this project was a wonderful opportunity to explore and highlight a few of the tiny gems ‘lost’ in the museum’s vast collection,says Rey. One of the featured items is a handwoven basket from the 20th century that measures just millimeters in diameter. Other items have never been viewed by the public.

Lost Beauty II: The Art of Museum Stories is the combination of history, preservation, culture, biology, and natural science… brought into focus using art to deliver the message. 

Entry to Lost Beauty II is included with general museum admission ($16 adults, $13 children 2- 17, seniors, students, and military) and free for BMS members. Tickets may be reserved in advance online at or purchased at the door.

An exhibition catalog will accompany the exhibition which details the history of the Buffalo Museum of Science, the process in creating the artwork and narratives about each of the artifacts.

The museum will be hosting an adult night (21+) with cash bar on Friday, December 10 that might be of interest to your followers. Alberto will be on site to guide the event guests through the exhibit, and there will be fun adult-appropriate science and art activities for guests to participate in. More details are here –

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