The combination of biology and technology to produce art is one of the most controversial topics in the art world. Formally referred to as biotech and art, this form of art deals with directly stimulating art into the biological science world with the tools of technology. This crossing of paths with the science and art worlds helps connect the two cultures and create a third one, something which we have been discussing all quarter. There are many different variations of biotech and art and some artists argue that it is important to be working with the tissue of cells directly while others say that collaborating with scientists is just as effective. As discussed in Professor Vesna’s lectures this week, Joe Davis is the pioneer of this form of art. Known as being an “eccentric artist” for coming up with crazy ideas, Davis has had many inventions and theories that have paved the way for other bio tech artists to follow. Two of his main ones were the audio microscope, which translated light into sound, and the enfogene, which identified a gene to be translated by the machine of human being into meaning. Overall, through the course of his career, Joe Davis helped pose critical questions about life and manipulating life, which inspired other artists to further uncover biotech art.
After learning about Joe Davis’ career from Professor Vesna’s lectures, I have a better understanding of the overall topic of biotech and art and all that it includes. There is a huge debate with this form of art, involving how the human cells and genes can and should be manipulated in this process of creating new art. First off, I do believe that life itself is a valid expressive medium as there should be no restrictions when it comes to defining art. All of the new process involved with bio tech allow us to explore many more means of art in the world and we can value the artistic media and technologies by looking at the art that is produced. This is very different from how other technologies are evaluated because this form is more open ended with no definite question being answered. It is merely a way to open up more questions and explore more ideas. Finally, I do not think there should be any limits to human creativity unless it purposely harms another creatures’ life.
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