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Science Center’s Bioart Residency Kicks Off With Brooklyn-Based Artist

The first of three artists has been selected for the University City Science Center’s new BioArt Residency program. Laura Splan is an interdisciplinary artist whose work explores intersections of art, science, technology and craft. She will begin a three-month residency at uCity Square-based biotech company Integral Molecular on April 6, 2018.

The BioArt Residency program fosters collaboration between artists and scientists. Not only will it allow both parties to gain new perspectives, but artists will also be able to serve as intermediaries communicating and creating dialog around complex scientific issues. Three artists will each spend three months working on creative research projects in Integral Molecular’s labs.

Laura Splan’s conceptually based projects examine the material manifestations of our relationship with the human body. She reconsiders perceptions of the corporeal using both traditional and new media techniques. She questions culturally constructed notions of order and disorder by combining the ordinary with the institutional. Much of her work is inspired by experimentation with materials and processes, which she mines for their narrative implications and untapped potentials.

“This residency will be a rare opportunity to gain intimate insight into the cutting-edge research methods that scientists are working with today,” says Splan. “Biotechnology has been a frequent protagonist in my work often providing inspiration in its histories, principles, and aesthetics. I’m looking forward to seeing how more direct interaction with scientists and the tools they are using influences what I create in the Integral Molecular laboratory.”

Splan's work has been included in exhibitions at Museum of Arts & Design, New York, NY; New York Hall of Science, New York, NY; and Beall Center for Art + Technology, Irvine, CA. Her work has been exhibited internationally including her current solo exhibition at Occurrence Gallery (Montréal, QC) of electromyography data-driven artworks. Commissioned projects for her work have included projects examining the act of hand washing in H1N1 flu prevention for the Center for Disease Control, computerized lace doilies modeled on corona viruses for the Gen Art New Media Art Exhibition, and projects examining representations of HIV/AIDS at the Van Every/Smith Galleries at Davidson College. Her work is included in the collections of the Thoma Art Foundation, the NYU Langone Art Collection, the Institute for Figuring, and the UCSF Infectious Disease Department.

The BioArt Residency is supported by The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.