‘Transmissions: Exploring the Microbial World’ – new exhibition at LifeSpace
Published On Wed 10 Jun 2015 by Grant Hill
Visitors to the newest exhibition at the University of Dundee’s LifeSpace gallery will be invited to consider the implications of human co-existence with microbial life, including resistance to antibiotic medicine.
‘Transmissions: Exploring the Microbial World’ opens at LifeSpace, College of Life Sciences, with a reception on Thursday, 11th June from 5-7pm. The exhibition features work by artists who have collaborated with scientists to consider representations of microbial life, the global impact of microbial diseases and the evolution of antimicrobial resistance.
Transmissions brings to Dundee recent art works by Mark Doyle, Anne Milne and Jo Hodges & Robbie Coleman, made as a result of a residency programme at the Centre for Immunity, Infection and Evolution (CIIE) at the University of Edinburgh supported by ASCUS Art & Science. The works include handkerchiefs beautifully embroidered with representations of the bacteria living in your nose, to prints based on microscopic images of how the cells in our body communicate by passing molecular information from one to another.
The exhibition also includes historical artefacts from the University’s Archives and Museum Collections which illuminates the history of penicillin in relation to Dundee, and the longstanding efforts to understand and treat malaria, including a microscope slide dating from 1916 with a sample from a sufferer from Flanders. A selection of current research being conducted in this area at the universities of Dundee and Edinburgh will also feature.
Dr Sarah Cook, Curator of LifeSpace, said, “Artists are key to finding ways to better understand the world around us, and in this exhibition they have focused their attention on the microscopic world we can't see - bacteria and microbes. Microbes are vital to the human environment, which is not often understood in a media culture fixated on superbugs and transmitted infections.
“Come see the seductive and intriguing art works in this exhibition to learn more about how scientists are fighting the 1 per cent of bacteria that does cause harm, and are keeping ahead of the infectious organisms that continually adapt to become resistant to the antibiotics we use to treat infection.”
Miriam Walsh, ASCUS Assistant Manager, said, “We are excited to bring the work from our CIIE micro-residency earlier this year to new audiences in Dundee. Partnering with LifeSpace for this exhibition will give members of the public and researchers at the College of Life Sciences the chance to experience artworks that respond to CIIE's search to find new ways to combat infectious diseases. From mesmerising sculpture and video works, to revealing interviews and imaginative interventions, the artists will take you on their own journey through the microbial world.”
‘Transmissions: Exploring the Microbial World’ is supported by the Medicines for Malaria Venture and is a partnership between LifeSpace and ASCUS Art & Science with the Centre for Immunity, Infection and Evolution at the University of Edinburgh. It will remain open until 5th September and is open to the public each Saturday from 11am-5pm and by appointment during the week.
LifeSpace, the research-driven science art gallery, opened to the public in October of last year and is a collaborative partnership between researchers from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design and the College of Life Sciences. It is open to the public on Saturdays from 11am to 5pm, and is housed within the new Discovery Centre, the latest addition to Dundee’s UK-leading Life Sciences complex. More information can be found at http://lifespace.dundee.ac.uk.
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