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NAS Announces It Will Co-Host Virtual Symposium on Visual Culture and Bioscienc


WASHINGTON – The Office of Exhibitions and Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences will co-host the “Virtual Symposium on Visual Culture and Bioscience” from March 5 to 13, 2007, with the Center for Art and Visual Culture at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC).

Experts from around the world will discuss the intersections between the visual arts and the life sciences at this international event, which will take place on the Internet. A group of 30 participants – comprised of artists, scientists, historians, ethicists, curators, sociologists, and writers – will present a variety of perspectives on topics such as artists in the lab, imaging in art and bioscience, and the sociological implications of the growing connections between the two fields. A complete list of participants and examples of such intersections can be found on the following pages.

The discussion, which will be conducted through a listserv, will be accessible online at

Suzanne Anker, a visual artist and theorist working with genetic imagery, will moderate the discussion. She is the co-author of The Molecular Gaze: Art in the Genetic Age (Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, 2004). She curated “Gene Culture: Molecular Metaphor in Contemporary Art” (Fordham University, 1994), the first exhibition devoted entirely to the intersection of art and genetics. Anker teaches art history and theory at the School of Visual Arts in New York City where she is chair and editor of ArtLab23. She is also the host of BioBlurb on WPS1 Art Radio.

This event is made possible through the generous support of Ralph S. O’Connor and the Marian and Speros Martel Foundation. It is sponsored by the Office of Exhibitions and Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences and UMBC.

For more than 20 years, the Office of Exhibitions and Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences has sponsored exhibitions, concerts, and other events that explore relationships among the arts and sciences.

Symposium participants:

Max Aguilera-Hellweg, photographer, writer, and filmmaker, Cambridge, Mass.

Bergit Arends, historian and curator, Museum of Natural History, London
Andrew Carnie, artist, consultant, and Greater London Arts Professor at Winchester School of Art, Winchester, United Kingdom
Oron Catts, artistic director, SymbioticA: The Art & Science Collaborative Research Laboratory, School of Anatomy and Human Biology, University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia
Catherine Chalmers, artist, New York City
Helen Chandler, former scientific manager, Arts and Genomics Center, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Raphael Cuir, art historian and J.P. Getty Scholar, Los Angeles
Carl Djerassi, emeritus professor of chemistry, Stanford University, San Diego
Florian Dombois, professor and head, Institute for Transdisciplinarity, Bern University of the Arts, Bern, Switzerland
Troy Duster, professor of sociology, New York University, New York City
Sian Ede, arts director, UK Branch of Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation Applications, London
Sabine Flach, lecturer, Center for Literary Studies, Berlin
Giovanni Frazzetto, molecular biologist, London School of Economics and Political Science, London

David Freedberg, professor and director, Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, Columbia University, New York City
Karl Grimes, artist and professor, School of Communications, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland
Jens Hauser, independent curator and writer, Paris
Marvin Heiferman, curator, Creative Consultant to the Smithsonian Photography Initiative, and professor, New York School of Visual Arts, New York City
Vladimir Mironov, research associate professor and director of Bioprinting Center, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston
Orlan, performance artist, Paris
Nancy Princenthal, senior editor, Art in America, New York City
Ingeborg Reichle, art historian, Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences, Berlin
Miriam van Rijsingen, professor of humanities, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Michael Sappol, curator–historian, National Library of Medicine, Bethesda, Md.
Brad Smith, researcher in Biomedical Visualization and associate dean of the School of Art & Design, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Andrew Solomon, writer and board member, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, N.Y.
Susan Squier, Brill Professor of Women’s Studies and English, Pennsylvania State University, University Park.
Eugene Thacker, assistant professor, School of Literature, Communication, and Culture, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta

Richard Twine, principal investigator, ESRC Center for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics, Lancaster University, Lancaster, United Kingdom
Catherine Wagner, artist and professor of art, Mills College, Oakland, C.A.

Catherine Waldby, international research fellow, Department of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Peter Weibel, chairman, Center for Art and Technology, Karlsruhe, Germany
Richard Wingate, lecturer, Center for Developmental Neurobiology, King’s College, London



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