Attire To Be Worn When Social Networking With Plants: update

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An elegant black dress in which the intricate white patterning is alive and will link its wearer into the soil mycorrhizosphere.  The latter is  a vast network made by symbiotic root  fungi which promotes plant growth  through which plants have recently been shown to communicate forming  a type of information network amongst plants. These are the latest experiments for this work. The intricate, and massively complex networks that can be seen in the images here are formed by the soil mycorrhiza. Next step, inoculation onto black material.

C-MOULD UPDATE: Bacterial Cellulose Production

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A short time ago C-MOULD the world’s largest collection of microorganisms for use in art and design acquired  two strains of Gluconoacetobacter xylinus, which produce  cellulose nanofibres when grown with sugar. These images of are of the first test run for  bacterial cellulose production. It’s an intriguingly tough yet flexible living  material. Impregnated with skin cells it might form a biocompatible scaffold for the synthesis of human skin or if the bacteria are allowed to grow through grains of sand it might form a type of BioConcrete for building.

The Sensitive Bacillus

Stressed from below,filaments aligned

Stressed from below,filaments aligned

Stressed fromabove, filaments aligned

Stressed from above, filaments aligned

Unstressed, filaments random

Unstressed, filaments random

Unstressed, filaments random

Unstressed, filaments random

These are images of a filament forming bacterium  that an UG project student under my supervision, James Stratford, discovered that  uniquely responds to stress. Would make a lovely living output for some electronic system that combined electronics with biology

Old Winchester Hill: Various impressions

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A trip to the ancient downland of Old Winchester National Nature Reserve. Grasses and flowers jostled into constant movement by the stong and gusty southerley wind. Popped a neutral density filter onto the front of the camera lens and took these photographs with exposures of between 2-10 secs. Liking the way that the movement has produced almost impressionistic paintings and that the the grasses have etched their motion into the images. There is also microbiology here. Beneath our feet, and underpinning this ecology,  a vast edifice of chalk made from the dead and calcified bodies of microorganisms known as coccliolithophores.

BioGems

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These are tests for a novel type of living jewellery that is made from pigmented bacteria, and a specially formulated transparent growth medium.  The bacteria in these liquid crystal gemstones uniquely respond to their wearers and in doing so the jewellery records its wearer’s history and that of their external environment.  Each BioGem is consequently unique, it’s internal patterns, being an intimate 3-Dimensional recording of its wearer’s own unique  past.

Dead Bees and a Eucalyptus Tree

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I’ve been looking for dead bees in order to convert them into crystals to highlight their plight (see posts below). Unfortunately, I seem to have found a very rich hunting ground for them. This is just a small selection of around 100 dead or dying bees of all types that I found underneath a Eucalyptus Tree. I’m wondering now if these trees or their pollen is toxic to bees.