Inside the Mundane Yet Magical Lab of a Nobel Prize Winner

A new photo series takes you inside Ben Feringa's chemistry lab.

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry laureate Bernard Lucas Feringa
The Nobel Prize in Chemistry laureate Bernard Lucas Feringa holds his Nobel lecture at the Aula Magna lecture hall at the Stockholm University in Stockholm, Sweden on December 08, 2016. / AFP / TT NYHETSBYRÅN AND TT News Agency / Claudio BRESCIANI / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read CLAUDIO BRESCIANI/AFP/Getty Images)

Winning a Nobel Prize is one of the biggest achievements of someone’s lifetime, and it only comes after years, or decades, of time in the lab. A new photography series called Playground takes you inside labs to experience everyday realities of winners, like Ben Feringa, a Nobel Prize-winning chemist at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. As a chemist, he designs nanomachines, and though that sounds incredibly interesting, his lab is just like many worldwide: sterile, white, with fume hoods and lab coats. But Jos Jansen, the photographer, is able to make it feel magical. He says that the lab is the place where Nobel Prize winners “really can follow their curiosity, without any restrictions.”

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