Brooklyn Botanic Garden Presents Pondlife

A Multimedia Exhibition by Sally Warring On View March 22, 2018, through March 2019
by BBG
March 11, 2018

Brooklyn Botanic Garden is excited to announce Pondlife, a new multimedia exhibition by scientist and filmmaker Sally Warring that combines art and biology in an exploration of the teeming microbial world living in the Garden’s ponds. Microbes live in every environment on Earth, from the Arctic to the Amazon to your local park. They produce around half the world’s oxygen, degrade waste, form important symbioses with plants and animals, and have roles in our own bodies. Yet many people have never seen a microbe and have no idea what they do.

Using samples of water Warring has collected from Brooklyn Botanic Garden—including the pond in the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden, the pools on Lily Pool Terrace, and the pond in the Shelby White and Leon Levy Water Garden—Pondlife reveals the hidden microscopic life all around us through photographs and videos of aquatic microbes. During the exhibition, signs will be placed throughout the Garden to show visitors where samples were collected and to explain the role of these microorganisms in the ecosystem of each body of water. The exhibition will be on view from March 22, 2018, through March 2019 in the gallery of Steinhardt Conservatory and throughout the grounds.

According to Warring, a postdoctoral research scholar at the American Museum of Natural History, “There is a microscopic jungle in every drop of water, and with a microscope you can go on safari. As you walk around the Garden, take a close look at your surroundings. Look at the ponds and the water features. What do you see? Water, mud, weeds, some pond scum here and there. These are ordinary sights at any pond. But if we put them under a microscope, we can see a cast of extraordinary characters that call these places home.”

Learn more about the Pondlife exhibition and upcoming events.

About Sally Warring

Sally Warring is a New York–based biologist, science communicator, and documentarian. Originally from New Zealand, Sally holds a Ph.D. in genomics and molecular biology from New York University and is currently a postdoctoral research scholar at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, where she studies free-living microbial organisms. Her images and videos can be found on Instagram and at


Pondlife is part of Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Green Garden, Green City initiative.

Sponsor, Green Garden, Green City JPMorgan Chase & Co.

About Brooklyn Botanic Garden

Founded in 1910, Brooklyn Botanic Garden (BBG) is an urban botanic garden that connects people to the world of plants, fostering delight and curiosity while inspiring an appreciation and sense of stewardship of the environment. Situated on 52 acres in the heart of Brooklyn, the Garden is home to over 18,000 kinds of plants and hosts more than 900,000 visitors annually.

Learn what’s happening at Brooklyn Botanic Garden at; read the Garden’s blog at; and find out what’s in bloom at Visitor entrances are at 990 Washington Avenue, 150 Eastern Parkway, and 455 Flatbush Avenue. For hours, directions, and admission information, please visit Follow BBG on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and join the conversation using the hashtag #brooklynbotanic.

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