Seeing the Art in Science

The German Center for Research and Innovation (GCRI) and ZEISS present an event and exhibit about the art in science

News

Genomics, the study of an organism’s complete set of DNA, has been one of the most significant developments in science over the past 25 years.  On Tuesday June 16, the German Center for Research and Innovation (GCRI) and ZEISS co-sponsored an event held at the GCRI in United Nations Plaza, New York.

Event at the GCRI in United Nations Plaza, New York
Event at the GCRI in United Nations Plaza, New York

Moderated by Dr. Kirk Czymmek, Director of ZEISS North American Applications and Labs, three speakers from the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology (IGB) provided an overview of genomics as well as the history of the art of science and artistically enhancing images. Kathryn Faith Coulter, Senior Multimedia Designer at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology (IGB) at the University of Illinois, discussed her role as the managing artist for the Institute’s Art of Science collection, now in its fifth year.  Ms. Coulter works with researchers from the IGB to select and artistically enhance images for the exhibit.  Her work bridges art and science, capturing the public’s attention and inviting them to learn more about the research that produced these images.

The panel of speakers at the GCRI event
The panel of speakers at the GCRI event

Ms. Coulter was joined by Dr. Glenn Fried, Director of Core Facilities at the IGB.  He explained how the Core Facilities provides IGB faculty as well as faculty from across campus with the tools and expertise to meet their imaging goals. These images, produced largely by high-end ZEISS equipment, were showcased in the Art of Science exhibit which opened immediately after the panel discussion.  The images highlight scientific breakthroughs, collaborative research, and the beauty of discovery.

Dr Kirk Czymmek, Director of the ZEISS Microscopy Labs New York and moderator of the event, discussing Sciart with the invited guests
Dr. Kirk Czymmek discussing art in science with the invited guests

Dr. Lisa Stubbs, Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology at The School of Molecular and Cellular Biology at the University of Illinois, described how she uses mouse genetics and comparative genomics to explore how gene regulatory machinery has evolved in vertebrate species. She believes that changes in transcription factor repertoires and regulatory rewiring of deeply conserved genes can explain biological differences between species and individuals in a population. Microscope images from her laboratory formed the basis of some of the artworks in the exhibition.

Jim Sharp (right), President at Carl Zeiss Inc. and Carl Zeiss Microscopy LLC
Jim Sharp (right), President at Carl Zeiss Inc. and Carl Zeiss Microscopy LLC

Approximately 200 attendees from New York’s scientific and business communities enjoyed the wide ranging panel discussion and participated in a lively Q&A, with particular interest shown in the role of genetics in cancer.

Together with the GCRI we are providing a recording of the panel discussion, you can directly watch it as an embedded video or visit the Vimeo channel of the GCRI:

 

The Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology (IGB) at the University of Illinois created the Art of Science program to celebrate the power of the visual medium to tell stories about the natural world. You will find more details and a gallery of the artwork on Facebook by clicking here!

 

About our partners:

The German Center for Research and Innovation is a cornerstone of the German government’s initiative to internationalize science and research. It provides information and support for the realization of collaborative projects between North America and Germany, and is one of five centers worldwide.

The Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology (IGB) is dedicated to transformative research in Agriculture, Human Health, the Environment, and Energy Use and Production. They advance life sciences research and stimulate bioeconomic development in the state of Illinois in a number of ways, including pioneering research in bioenergy, critical climate change studies, and promising work in regenerative medicine, drug development, and understanding cancer at the cellular level.

 

Tags: Confocal Microscopy, Electron and Ion Microscopy, Light Microscopy

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