Exploring the intersection of biology and art

Photo exhibit in Washington, D.C., this fall features the work of Dr. Ruiz i Altaba.

Posted Sept. 18, 2006

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"Evolving Identities in the Genetic Age," a collection of photographs by scientist and artist Ariel Ruiz i Altaba, PhD, will be exhibited this fall by the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C.

The images, which mix human silhouettes with portraits decontextualized by DNA sequencing ladders and boxes with test tubes containing human tissue or DNA samples, explore the intersection of biology and art. The effect of the exhibit, according to NAS materials, is to trigger an examination of self-identification and the classification of others.

Dr. Ruiz i Altaba is the Louis-Jeantet Professor of Stem Cell Research at the University of Geneva in Switzerland. His lab focuses on the study of pattern formation, stem cells and the development of the brain and cancer. He received his doctorate in molecular biology and biochemistry from Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass.

His photographs and texts have appeared in exhibits and magazines worldwide, including in the collections of the Bibliotheque nationale de France in Paris, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston and the Museum of Fine Arts in Philadelphia.

Dr. Ruiz i Altaba also is the founding director of WetLab, a forum based in New York for the interchange of ideas between science and the visual arts.

"Evolving Identities" continues through Oct. 15 at the Keck Center Gallery, 500 Fifth St., NW, by appointment only, 202-334-2436. It will be open weekdays from Oct. 20 to Dec. 20 in the Upstairs Gallery, 2100 C Street, NW. More information is available online (link).

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