Research & Residencies

Bioart Residency at Coalesce Center for Biological Arts

February 1, 2020
Bioart Residency at Coalesce Center for Biological Arts

Coalesce Center for Biological Arts

Coalesce Center for Biological Arts is a hybrid studio laboratory facility dedicated to enabling hands-on creative engagement with the tools and technologies of the life sciences.

Residency Project: Permeations

While in residence, Laura Splan will experiment with dyeing textiles with transformed bacteria.The dyed fabrics will be used to create mixed media sculptures for upcoming exhibitions.Splan’s recent work includes artworks made from the fiber of laboratory animals. Her sculptures invite viewers to engage with objects made with the wool of llamas and alpacas who produce antibodies for human drugs. Splan will continue to work with this fiber in the Coalesce BioArt Lab to explore the hidden materiality and labor of biotechnology. Her experiments with bacterial transformation will serve as a conceptual framework to evoke notions of the transgression of boundaries, hybridity, and engineered bodies. Permeations examines institutionalized notions of membranes as they are defined and “performed” by language, image and movement. The project questions the circumscription of arbitrary borders, the persistence of cultural power dynamics in scientific metaphors, and the invisible apparatus that extend beyond seemingly contained systems.

Supported by Coalesce Center for Biological Arts, UB Genome, Environment and Microbiome Community of Excellence

Special thanks to
Dr. Solon Morse for residency laboratory protocol preparation
Felipe Shibuya and Dave Jadric for workshop documentation and facilitation

Residency Artist Talk

Residency Webpage