A Two-Day Workshop divided into Four Sections

Mo, August 7th:

Construct and test a yeast based Pollution Sensor: (da Costa, Yi, Kim)
This workshop introduces participants to basic techniques in synthetic biology through the construction of a yeast based Nitric Oxide sensor. We will construct a DNA plasmid containing BFP (Blue Flourescent Protein). This BFP indicator (reporter gene) will express (turn blue under UV light) upon exposure to Nitric Oxide. We will introduce this plasmid into yeast cells and let the cultures grow over night. Blowing smoke into the culture should turn the dish blue!

Tissue engineering workshop for artists: (Catts, Ross)
Tissue culture and tissue engineering represent a new area for artistic engagement. These branches of biomedical research have a major influence on perceptions of body, self and medical thinking. Tissue engineering enable researchers to grow three dimensional living tissues constructs of varying sizes, shapes and tissue types. This intensive workshop will introduce artists and other interested people to basic principals of animal tissue culture and tissue engineering, as well as to its history and the different artistic projects working with TC and TE. The workshop will involve harvesting viable cells form meat and the construction of a sterile environment for tissue culture work.

DNA separation, visualization and interpretation: (Vanouse)
The fundamental techniques introduced in this workshop--DNA separation, visualization and analysis--form the basis for DNA fingerprinting, DNA forensics and recombinant DNA procedures. These relatively recent, fairly esoteric biotechnological practices complicate terms like nature, invention, language, code, ownership, etc., in a highly politicized cultural moment in which informed public debate has been minimized. This intensive workshop is a hands-on introduction to techniques including restriction of DNA and gel electrophoresis. It will be contextualized by the broader implications of these very techniques. Instead of focusing participants on a final analysis of lab results, the hope is to introduce basic fundamentals and to "open up" the entire space of these experiments to interpretation in order to catalyze artistic experiment and new methods of analysis. No prior experience with molecular biology is necessary -the workshop is intended for artists, theorists and other interested people.

Human-Animal Food (Jeremijenko)