Art and Science, an inspiring combination! by lindash


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									Art and Science, an inspiring combination!
Congratulations! Science teacher Julie Boston, from John Curtin College of the Arts,
received the 2009 Premier’s Teacher of the Year award. The WA Education Award judges
praised Ms Boston for being an enthusiastic and inventive educator; bringing musical instruments
and paintbrushes into the science classroom and promoting cross-curricular learning to improve
student confidence.

“We all learn differently so I create flexible lessons to tap into my students’ learning styles and to
individually tailor programs that meet their learning needs,” said Ms Boston when accepting the
award last year.

ArtsEdge applauds this attitude to creative thinking and in keeping with this topic here’s
news of two contemporary arts projects incorporating cutting edge technology and
innovations in science.

Nanotechnology in Art
Nanotechnology is the study of matter on a molecular scale, 100 nanometres or less in size. To
better understand the miniscule scale of this, consider the average thickness of a human hair is
50,000 nanometres.

art in the age of nanotechnology, will be
held during the 2010 Perth International
Arts Festival and features internationally
recognised artists and scientists such as
Christa Sommerer (Austria) and Laurent
Mignonneau (France); Paul Thomas (Aus)
& Kevin Raxworthy (Aus); Mike Philips
(UK); Boo Chapple (Aus) & William Wong
(Aus); and Victoria Vesna (USA) & James
Gimzewski (USA). John Curtin Gallery
Director, Chris Malcolm, said the exhibition,
which is one of the first of its kind in the
southern hemisphere, reflected the new
ways in which scientists and artists are
exploring matter.
                                                              Photograph courtesy of John Curtin Gallery

“Nanotechnology is a relatively young science and it was an interesting concept to bring together
contemporary artists (who are always looking for new tools of expression) with scientists who are
developing new tools of investigation, in an area of science that is currently the topic of much
public debate,” said Mr Malcolm.

Using state-of-the-art technologies like the Atomic Force Microscope, works in the exhibition
include audio recordings of cells touching, audio speakers made from bone, and a visual
landscape projection produced from the surfaces of dead and living cells to show their
differences below a cellular level.

One of the works, Nanomandala by US-based artist Victoria Vesna, chair of the UCLA
Department of Design/Media Arts, and James Gimzewski, a Scottish born UCLA Chemistry
Professor and nanoscience pioneer, was inspired by watching nanoscientists working in much
the same way as Buddhist monks who laboriously create sacred sand mandalas grain by grain.

Senior Lecturer at Curtin’s School of Design and Art, Paul Thomas, who collaborated with Kevin
Raxworthy on an installation entitled Nanoessence, said there was debate on the future
implications of nanotechnology, which had the potential to create new materials with wide-
ranging applications.

art in the age of nanotechnology is part of Curtin’s dedication to science and its applications
and will feature a video link to the i500 Project which will be beamed directly from the
University’s new Resources and Chemistry Precinct.

The i500 Project uses state-of-the-art projection technology to display the work undertaken in the
Precinct onto the walls and ceiling of the main building, as well as into the Gallery.

The exhibition opens 5 February and closes end of April 2010. The Gallery is open
between 12pm and 5pm Monday to Friday and will also be open for its Sunday@Curtin
events between 1pm and 4pm on 7, 14, 21, 28 February, 28 March and 25 April 2010.

Visit: for further information.

SymbioticA in Tokyo
Medicine and Art at the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo is based around 150 items borrowed from
the Wellcome Collection, the medical and anthropological acquisitions of American-born
pharmaceutical entrepreneur Henry Wellcome (1853-1936). The items on display show the
development to how we understand our bodies
Exhibited alongside; Da vinci, Hirst and Okyo are two artists who push the boundaries of the
body, and our understanding of it, to the limit. Working together as The Tissue Culture & Art
Project, Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr present Victimless Leather, a system of flasks and tubes that
feed a combination of human and mouse cells in the form of living tissue that is being grown into
the shape a miniature coat. Catts said that the title of the piece is ironic, as the projects he
creates at his institute, SymboticA (at the University of Western Australia) are meant to raise
ethical questions about the conduct of laboratories around the world.
SymbioticA, The Centre of Excellence in Biological Arts, is a jointly funded initiative
between The University of Western Australia and the Western Australian Department of
Culture and the Arts. Find more information at

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