Kathy High, Gut Love, 2017. This image depicts a detail of an installation at Esther Klein Gallery, Philadelphia, PA. The Gut Love project arises from questions concerning gut microbiota and the immune system.
Ruby Merritt, Sequence Stratigraphic-Material Units 1994-Present, Found Rocks, Fossils, Minerals, Wood. Installation View for The Vermilion Stained Exhibition, University at Buffalo Department of Art Gallery.
Günes-Hélène Isitan, Spill Your Guts, first prototype in progress, 2018. Spill Your Guts is a project to create sonic instruments that play compositions based upon her own gut flora.
Nicole Clouston incubating columns in UB greenhouse, 2016. Clouston’s project, SOIL, takes soil as its medium, engaging the vast array of microbial life present within it and the ways in which we are connected to it
Byron Rich, Protista Imperialis (v2.1) 2014, bioreactor unit contains algae, arduino, LED array, air pump; digital and computer components include microphone, webcam, computer and live network links. Detail View
Coalesce: Center for Biological Arts is a hybrid studio laboratory facility dedicated to enabling hands-on creative engagement with the tools and technologies of the life sciences.
It is a place where artists, designers and architects actively learn, use and create, using life sciences technologies as their medium; scientists explore new forms or broader cultural meanings of their work; and philosophers, writers and social scientists interact in a tangible way with the processes of the life sciences. However, it is a place where such disciplinary labels are challenged and hybrid creative practices are incubated.
From medicine to the environment, from stem cells to microbes, from genes to biomes, much of the US public is ill prepared to evaluate the most complex questions, challenges and issues facing our society today. “What does it mean to design a living organism?” “What aspects of such an organism could be called an invention… or an artwork?” “How do we presently define life?” Coalesce will complement UB’s expertise in the life sciences by addressing questions and issues vital to public understanding and participation, but beyond the analytical constraints of most disciplines.
Coalesce is a major facet of GEM, establishing a dedicated studio laboratory for biological art and emerging practices in the arts, as well as graduate positions, interdisciplinary coursework, residency opportunities, DIY workshops and exhibitions.
This hybrid facility will encourage creative engagement, becoming a place where:
While in-person activities at the university are currently on hold, we are still planning residency applications pending a return to regular operations in the 2020-2021 academic year.
Special thanks to Arzu Ozkal, a UB alumnus who designed the Coalesce logo.
308 Hochstetter Hall | UB North Campus | 716-645-9121