WELCOME TO DESMA 160

Special Topics in Design | Media Arts: Biotechnology and Design

Bio-designers use cells, DNA molecules, proteins, and living tissues to highlight ethical, social, and aesthetic issues that influence contemporary life. Introduction to how bio-design blurs distinctions between science and design through combination of design and scientific processes, creating wide public debate. Introduction to new sciences that influence food we eat, clothes we wear, and environment in which we reside. Students challenged to think outside the box, explore divergent and convergent thinking, and seek out knowledge and inspiration from ideas that drive nano- and bio-technology. Peer collaboration encouraged to develop speculative design projects that address issues covered.
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Please contact Prof. Victoria Vesna if you are interested in joining this class.


BLOGS

Final Update

(This is just an update on where I am for my final project)

For my final I will go ahead with the idea I developed for the midterm. I have been in contact with Cydney Vicentina from the Honors177 class. Her midterm proposal can be find here: https://www.biotechart.artscinow.com/node/1905

As our interests and thought seem to be meeting, we will collaborate on a text for the class publication, and as discussed with Alvaro, we might create a seperate category within the publication for this.

Project Update

The progress I have made towards my final project has been consolidating and specifying my ideas. I realized during my research that I was straying further and further from my main interest, design, and I wanted to refocus on how design can reduce the cognitive load of being sustainable. The most pertinent idea behind this project is to use nanotechnology to become more sustainable while being able to work a nine to five job. 

 

Reshaping Beauty: Development on the Final

            During Thursday's class, I met with Alvaro and we discussed my project going forward. He connected me with Sung Hong, who is based in Korea, in an exploration for a possible collaboration between our two projects. My project focuses on creating a sustainable makeup concealer, made entirely out of natural compounds, that is then packaged with mycelium in an effort to reduce plastic waste.

Progress on Final Project

For my final project, I would like to work on the plan that I introduced for the midterm. As a reminder, I was focusing on the seriousness of plastic wastes and a way to use those recycled materials. There are various methods to utilize plastic wastes, such as water bottles or containers, in which they could turn into totally new products.

Blog Summary

After looking back at my blogs for the past eight weeks I saw that there were many times where I either did further research about a topic that was given during class or did a research about an artist that focused on one of our topics. I talked about an bioartist using yeast to create vanishing photographs, I talked about rice and how rice plays such a big role in my Korean culture, how pencils are made, the connection between air pollution and covid 19 death rates, affects on how coronavirus has helped the environment, climate and diet, and crispr gene editing.

Summary of Blogs

  Flipping back through all of my old blogs, I found a pattern that was fairly predictable, and greatly explains why I chose the topic I did for my midterm project. Overall, looking at blogs from the class as a whole, there was a large focus on taking the topic of that week and finding artists that would create based around that topic (typically a speculative design).

Progress on Final Project

As a refresher, my project deals with building out a sustainable beauty product, free of the toxic compounds that damage the skin, that will then be packaged using mycelium to reduce the great plastic pollution problem that permeates our society today. Through this process of giving makeup a cleaner look and feel, this proposal strives to refind our natural balance.

Final Project Progress

    This blog will focus on the updates of my final project. My final project will be conducted through Ableton Live. I will be using the data from Coronavirus and I will be translating that data into sound and potential sound sculpture. After hearing the talk with Bill Fontana I was amused and interested in the idea of a sound sculpture.

(summary of blogs) Of building a poetic reality: an homage to nature and her systems

I started my blog with posting about sourdoughs made form ancient Egyptian yeast cultures. This one was followed by some writing about salt, artificial intelligence and ritual magic. Further along I touched on air quality in an artistic sense and on how to appreciate clouds. I also took a look from the distance onto planet Earth and the human made satellites that are tracking and documenting Earth’s wellbeing. (Let’s stay in space) I mentioned art in space – to be seen with the naked eye. From there I explored how slime mould can hep to map dark matter.

Connections of the class

Going over my past blogs, I realized I seemed to focus on understanding the topic and mechanisms embedded into each process. This learning process as well as how learning has changed due to the pandemic are ideas that interest me. Now that everything is online, our notions and way of engaging in this content are very up to us. It is up to us how much to work, in my opinion, because as you are by yourself, you are your only drive in a way. It is hard to hear encouragements over a video or camera and take them to heart. 

Connecting the Dots

             During Thursday's class I sat back and from a 1,000 foot view I looked at all the blogs I had written thus far. In my first blog "The Art of Food Starting With Bread" I discussed how food was an artist's tool to express themselves. I mentioned one Instagram artist in particular, Vineyard Baker, and how her work was certainly inspiring in regards to the extent of detail and imagination that went into her edible pieces.

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