The Designers & Artists 4 Genomics Award (DA4GA)

The Designers & Artists 4 Genomics Award (DA4GA) is the first Dutch contest in which art, design and life sciences are brought together

“Growing graffiti, a urinary diary, an interactive plant medium and an edible time machine - Winners Designers & Artists 4 Genomics Award announced

Amsterdam, 12-08-2011 The Designers & Artists 4 Genomics Award (DA4GA) is the first Dutch contest in which art, design and life sciences are brought together. Participants work with living material on projects that evoke surprise and questions. On Thursday December 8th, the award was presented for the second time. This time, four projects were rewarded: growing graffiti, a urinary diary, an interactive plant medium and an edible time machine.

During the award ceremony at Naturalis, Leiden, Nicola Triscot (director of The Arts Catalyst, London) spoke about the collaboration between art and science. Following the presentations of the finalists, jury chair Macha Roesink (Director of the Museum of Pavilions) presented the award. This year, four projects were awarded; because of the high quality of the proposals, NGI took the generous decision to offer a fourth prize. The jury praised the projects for their "ingenuity, the way they build a bridge between art and science and their social expressiveness." The four winners were each awarded with €25,000 to be spent on the realization of their proposal, which will be presented at Naturalis from mid June until the end of December 2012.

Four winners
Growing graffiti
The proposal Concrete Lichen, by Lionel Billiet (BE) and the Kluyver Centre for Genomics of Industrial Fermentation investigates how static surfaces such as buildings, can be decorated with growing graffiti consisting of lichen (a symbiosis of algae and fungi).

Urinary diary
Aqua Vita, the proposal by Susana Leret Cámara (ES), Mike Thompson (UK) and the Netherlands Metabolomics Centre, assumes that urine is not just bodily waste, but consists of rich information and presents us with valuable insights into our lifestyle. Aqua Vita combines advanced metabolomics technology with traditional Chinese medicine and visualizes this information into a diary.

Interactive plant medium
In Vena Verbum makes people aware of the fact that plants are much more than static, decorative objects. Tiddo Bakker (NL) and the Centre for BioSystems Genomics let us discover the hidden world of plants by developing a medium that measures the activity of the chloroplasts and shows that the plant continually responds to its environment. The medium gives the plant a proverbial voice.

Edible time machine
What impact will changes in climate, demography and energy have on the Dutch food culture? The Edible Time Machine presents futuristic and multisensory meals based on the 'Getting Old Together' study and the culinary history and future of the Netherlands. The project is run by Zack Denfeld, Catherine Kramer and Yashas Shetty (IN), in collaboration with the Netherlands Consortium for Healthy Ageing.

DA4GA is an initiative of the Netherlands Genomics Initiative and Waag Society and is realized in cooperation with CSG Centre for Society and the Life Sciences and is presented by NCB Naturalis.

About DA4GA
The Designers & Artists 4 Genomics Award (DA4GA) is a unique international competition that stimulates artists and designers to enter the world of bio-art and to create new projects in cooperation with scientists from recognized Dutch genomics centres. Last year December, the first Designers & Artists 4 Genomics Award was presented by Robbert Dijkgraaf. This edition attracted a lot of (inter)national press. Jalila Essaidi’s bulletproof skin appeared on e.g. BBC, CNN and Fox News. Another winning project, the microscopic opera by Matthijs Munnik, is currently nominated for the Rotterdam Design Prize.

Press information.

For more information please contact Lukie Stalenhoef on or 020-5579898.

More information about DA4GA:

About the Netherlands Genomics Initiative
The Netherlands Genomics Initiative (NGI) finances and directs the research in genomics in the Netherlands. The objective of NGI is to realize an excellent knowledge infrastructure that generates new economical and social value on a regular basis and of which the results are beneficial to society.

About Waag Society
Waag Society, institute for art, science & technology develops creative technology for social innovation. The foundation researches, develops concepts, pilots and prototypes and acts as an intermediate between the arts, science and the media. Waag Society cooperates with cultural, public and private parties.

About CSG Centre for Society and the Life Sciences
CSG Centre for Society and the Life Sciences analyses, assesses and improves the relationship between society and life sciences research. By doing so, CSG improves the way in which the life sciences meet the expectations and needs of society.

About NCB Naturalis
The NCB Naturalis (the Netherlands Centre for Biodiversity) mission is to be an open archive of Life’s diversity and dedicated to reconstructing and understanding the Tree of Life, to educating People about our natural world and to raising awareness about sustainable use of Earth’s living resources.

About the jury
Designers and artists developed their project proposals in cooperation with various Genomics Centre and presented them to a professional jury from the field or art and science. Seven proposals were discussed by the jury, consisting of: Macha Roesink (director Museum de Paviljoens), Karen Verschooren (curator Z33 – House for contemporary art), Geert Verbeke, (director Verbeke Foundation), Hub Zwart (scientific director CSG Centre for Society and the Life Sciences) en Paul Voogt (director of public program NCB Naturalis).



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