Agents in the Anthropocene: Trans/Disciplinary Practices in Art and Design Education Today

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Abstract from keynote “DNA to CMYK: Building Vocabularies for Bio-Artists and Designers” spoken at the Symposium held at Piet Zwart Institute, Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam University, the Netherlands. 27-28 January 2017:

In parallel to advances in modern biotechnology, the growth of DIY biology movement is increasingly allowing artists and designers to extend their material and technical vocabularies to microscopic and provocative nature, such as the direct manipulation of DNA. This presentation explores potential ways in which molecular hacking has, and could be facilitated in the future. It will outline a project in progress, for a tool that allows DIY community to genetically and metabolically manipulate common cyanobacteria for pigment production. The project will highlight possible future tools for the aspiring bio-artists and designers, as well as encouraging discourse about their implications.