Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Bioteknica: LiveLifeLab

I recently participated in a series of conversations for an issue of the Leonardo Electronic Almanac, one of which included artist Jennifer Willet. Willet is part of the Bioteknica collective (along with Shawn Bailey, which has been investigating the cultural significance of transgenics since 2004 through various participatory forms. Below is an announcement for their most recent project at Concordia University's FOFA Gallery.

Montréal, February 22, 2007 – BIOTEKNICA, an artist collective founded by Shawn Bailey and Jennifer Willet, began as an art project that projected its viewers into a future where designer organisms are generated on demand. Since 2004 BIOTEKNICA moved from the virtual laboratory into real biological science labs, growing organisms modeled on the Teratoma, an unusual cancerous growth containing multiple tissues like hair, skin, and nervous systems. BIOTEKNICA both embraces and critiques biotechnology, considering the contradictions and deep underlying complexities that these technologies offer the future of humanity. BIOTEKNICA’s most recent project, LiveLifeLab is a propositional performance and installation, taking place at Concordia University’s FOFA Gallery (ground floor, room 1-715, 1515 Ste. Catherine St. W.) February 27 until March 23, 2007.  A vernissage will be held Tuesday, March 13, 5:30 to 7:30.

BIOTEKNICA: LiveLifeLab is a new installation and performance that reflects BIOTEKNICA research and production to date.  The exhibition comprises objects the artists have prototyped, video and digital print documentation, an art performance site, and a tissue-engineering laboratory.  In the context of LiveLifeLab, Bailey and Willet will conduct an experiment/art action in which they construct a functional tissue culture lab in the gallery, and continue their research into creating new living art forms for the duration of the installation. This work results from ongoing questions arising for artists working with specialized scientific protocols and confronts the problems of access, accountability, and specialization that typically inhibit non-specialist engagement in and understanding of the sciences.

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posted by ryan griffis  # 1:26 PM

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