Monday, February 01, 2016

Science Cafe: Programming Life - Good Code/ Bad Code?

In this science café we want to address the images and techniques in art and science that apply to the living organism at its source: the organism as bacteria, as gene, as a storage, as connecting element, as an imaginative. Which problems, challenges and questions drive the artists and scientists that are dealing with life in its smallest and most complex form?

Biotechnology aims at prolonging life and minimizing disease. At the same time they have to comply with strong security regulations. The assumption that biology equals technology, which in consequence leads to an engineer-like approach towards life, is opposed to living organisms being complex and contingent “systems”. Biotechnology not longer describes its objects. Under the lead of the industry it is more and more split into specialized fields such as microbiology, genetics and synthetic biology. This development is strongly connected with new hopes and imagination, figuring a new knowledge and science of life, that might lead to both a longer and healthier life and a new industrial revolution.

Since biotechnology became a source for capitalist and humanist dreams, artists have started to engage with the technologies and the epistemic objects they apply to. They use the smallest bricks of biological life for new speculations on life and death, redefine our understanding of where one organism begins and another ends, and reveal life to all our senses.

In four short presentations we want to engage with different perspectives ranging from synthetic biology, speculative science and art.

Moderation: Johann Bauerfeind
1. iGEM Berlin - Mariam Hammoud: Building with BioBricks
2. Dr. Caroline Mair : Research with pathogens - Biodefense or Bioweapons?
3. Margherita Pevere: SEMINA AETERNITATIS

4. AnneMarie Maes: Urban Bee Lab 

Johann Bauerfeind
iGEM Berlin - Mariam Hammoud: Building with BioBricks
Dr. Caroline Mair : Research with pathogens - Biodefense or Bioweapons?
AnneMarie Maes: Urban Bee Lab

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