PARTICIPANTS: Amy Chase Gulden, Kristin Baldwin
PROGRAM DATE: Thursday, June 3, 2010

Science is transformed into art in this program that uses pigmented E. coli as a “living paint,” to create printed designs on paper. Under the guidance of Growing Impressions team Amy Chase Gulden and Kristin Baldwin, select New York City students were able to learn about microbiology as they spent the afternoon cultivating living designs of their own imagination. Throughout the program, the public is invited to visit the Museum’s Open Studio (sixth floor), to watch the designs, quite literally, emerge.
Participation by invitation only; public welcome to observe.

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Amy Chase Gulden is a visual artist interested in art-making processes that are collaborative, not fully under her control, and bring her into direct contact with the living world. She has been collaborating with molecular biologist Kristin Baldwin, using the microorganism, E. coli bacteria, to generate living, growing paintings that can be replicated indefinitely or immortalized by printing onto paper.

The team’s work was recently exhibited in New York City at the Serrano Contemporary gallery in a show entitled Growing Impressions, and the two are often asked to share the story of their collaboration with educators and students from across the arts and science fields at area museums and labs.

When not in the studio or lab, Gulden is the New York regional director for Visual Thinking Strategies, a research-based, learner-centered, art-viewing curriculum and teaching method that uses discussions of art to develop critical thinking, communication and visual literacy skills.

Kristin Baldwin
Molecular Biologist, Artist

Kristin Baldwin’s research harnesses cutting edge stem cell technology and cloning to understand how changes to genes and genomes allow stem cells to generate all the cell types found in a complex organism. Her laboratory recently generated Fibonacci, a mouse derived entirely from a skin cell that they had transformed into a stem cell using viruses. The experiment showed that skin-derived stem cells can potentially replace embryonic stem cells in research and therapeutic applications, a result cited as one of the most important breakthroughs of 2009 by Discover.

In collaboration with artist Amy Chase Gulden, Dr. Baldwin also genetically engineers living, growing paintings using E. coli bacteria as paint, offering a new way to study perception, in this case of art and beauty. The team’s work was recently exhibited at the Serrano Contemporary gallery in Chelsea in a show entitled Growing Impressions.

Dr. Baldwin is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Cell Biology at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California. She was selected as a 2007 Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences.