Bricolage, what if a cell were to escape, like a tiger from the zoo?


Bricolage is an installation that grows in the incubator that hosts it. Some “bio-bots” grow in this protected environment: they are autonomous cellular structures, specifically bioengineered by Nathan Thompson, Guy Ben-Ary and Sebastian Diecke. Bio-bots are made of blood cells, heart muscle cells and silk and they grow assembling autonomously in ever-changing forms: they contract, wriggle and aggregate, becoming visible to the naked eye. Their appearance is similar to a jellyfish without tentacles and in the slightest movements you can perceive a rhythm that recalls (our) heartbeat. The lack of intermediation of specific technical tools (such as the microscope) makes the interaction with these entities immediate and direct, almost familiar. The installation is accompanied by a visual text by the writer Josephine Wilson, which explores the concept of “bricolage” as a creative process that connects art and science in a chaotic relationship. “What if a cell were to escape, like a tiger from the zoo?”, “Can you feel sorry for a cell, or does it depend where they come from?”, we read in her writings. It is difficult to predict which forms will emerge from the self-assembly process, and it is in this uncertainty that the viewer is invited to enter and observe. Chiara Ciociola


Nathan Thompson, Guy Ben-Ary and Sebastian Diecke – Bricolage