May 21-June 21
4 undergraduate studio credits; $2400

From anatomical studies to landscape painting to the biomorphism of surrealism, the biological realm historically provided a significant resource for numerous artists. More recently, bio art has become a term referring to intersecting domains of the biological sciences and their incorporation into the plastic arts. Of particular importance in bio art is to summon awareness of the ways in which biomedical sciences alter social, ethical and cultural values in society.

Coming to the fore in the early 1990s, bio art is neither media specific nor locally bounded. It is an international movement with practitioners in such regions as Europe, the U.S., Russia, Asia, Australia and the Americas. Several sub-genres of bio art exist within this overarching term:

1) Artists who employ the iconography of the 20th- and 21st-century sciences, including molecular and cellular genetics, transgenically altered living matter, reproductive technologies and neurosciences. All traditional media, including painting, sculpture, printmaking and drawing are employed to convey novel ways of representing life forms.

2) Artists who utilize computer software, systems theory and simulations to investigate aspects of the biological sciences such as evolution, artificial life and robotics through digital sculpture and new media installations.

3) Artists employing biological matter itself as their medium, including processes such as tissue engineering, plant breeding, transgenics and ecological reclamation.

This interdisciplinary residency will take place in the new Fine Arts Nature and Technology Laboratory located in the heart of New York City’s Chelsea gallery district. Participants will have access to all of the facilities. Each student will be assigned an individual workstation. In addition, the Nature and Technology Lab houses microscopes for photo and video, skeleton collections, specimen collections, slide collections, an herbarium and aquarium as well as a library.

Demonstrations include microscopy, plant tissue engineering, molecular cuisine and the production of micro eco-systems. Field trips and visiting speakers will include artists, scientists and museum professionals. Students may work in any media, including the performing arts.

The Residency will be led by artist Suzanne Anker, Chair of the BFA Fine Arts Department at SVA, and Brandon Ballengée, bio-artist. In addition, visiting speakers will include artists, scientists and museum professionals including Mark Bridgen, Kathy High, James Walsh and Jennifer Willet.

NOTE: A portfolio is required for review and acceptance to this program. Residents who wish to borrow equipment from the Fine Arts Digital Lab are required to submit a $1,100 refundable security deposit. Participants will be held responsible for payment of any loss, theft or damage incurred to the equipment.

For further information or questions regarding SVA’s Summer Residencies contact:

Keren Moscovitch
Assistant Director, Special Programs
Division of Continuing Education
Tel: 212-592-2188