The photo exhibit “Art of Science” at the Liberty Science Center — extended twice due to popular demand — illustrates an aesthetic crossroads in which beautiful images, all unintended by-products of real scientific research, compete with art for art’s sake.

In another show, “In the Search of an Absolute” at the Zimmerli Art Museum, curator Julia Tulovsky has told the story of Russian artist Valery Yurlov — one of the pioneers of the Soviet Nonconformist Art movement, which started in the 1950s. For years, Yurlov worked in secret to pursue a career as an experimental artist who wanted to make more than state-sanctioned propaganda.

Produced by Christopher Benincasa for State of the Arts, 2013.