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Groups of diatoms or the scales of wings of butterflys were sometimes arranged to either form a geometric pattern, like a circle or a snowflake, or a picture, like a vase of flowers. Occasionally sponge spicules or foraminifera were part or comprised all, of an arrangement.

Those that are predominantly composed of diatoms were often meant to be used with transmitted light, whereas those composed mainly of butterfly scales were usually meant to be viewed with top lighting and had a solid black background. These arrangements were often sold in the 19th century and a few mounters continued this art in the 20th century and now into the 21st Century.

Perhaps the best known of the 20th century artists was the late Klaus Kemp who spent much of his life researching and perfecting the art of these arrangements. Most of the best quality arrangements in my collection were made by Klaus Kemp. Klaus also made personalized slides to order. Among these was a slide I ordered commemorating my daughter's birthday, and another a valentine for my wife. The diatom arrangements here are imaged with darkground illumination; the butterfly scale arrangements are illuminated with top lighting. All the the arrangements here, except for the bottom right circle of diatoms are by the late Klaus Kemp; the bottom right circle was sold by W. Watson in the late 19th century.

Klaus Kemp occasionally made three dimensional arrangements. These were made in two or three layers using a depression slide. Some subjects were on the bottom in the depression, some in a coverslip on top of the depression, and some on another coverslip above. An example of one of these, a Seascape is in this collection. Another example in this collection is a Jungle scene.

For an arrangement of butterfly scales by an early 20th century mounter, see the Herbert Potter arrangement on this site.