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The actors of hybrid ecologies are many. They are genetically engineered plants, cloned trees, animals used as sensors. Or they are robots, software and networks that encroach on the biological and sometimes manage to fuse with it. Some of this hybrid ecology is the direct result of human actions but increasingly, we see signs that biological and technological entities are escaping human control and are transforming the planet

“The Condition” might look like standard (media) art installation but don’t let its playful appearance fool you. The deeper you dig, the more you realize how many thought-provoking ideas and issues the work raises: new forms of ‘natural selection’ where it’s the prettiest -not the fittest- that survives, novel ecology in which salmons and tulips are grown à la carte, and intersection between the design of biological organisms and capitalistic values

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V12 Laraki is a perfect copy of a Mercedes-Benz 6.2L V12 engine. Except that each of its 465 components was handcrafted by Moroccan artisans who used 53 materials traditional to the country. The artist bought a Mercedes engine, his team disassembled it and faithfully replicated each piece using brass, marble, bone, mother of pearl, malachite, agate, precious woods, ammonite fossils, terracotta enamel, and other local materials. Then they assembled the engine using 660 casted copper bolts and the 465 exquisitely reproduced parts

The OpenSurgery initiative investigates whether building DIY surgical tools, outside the scope of healthcare regulations, could plausibly provide an accessible alternative to the costly professional healthcare services worldwide.

By presenting a semi-functional DIY surgery robot, theoretically capable of assisting in domestic keyhole surgery, the project provokes alternative thinking about medical innovation and aims to challenge the socioeconomic frameworks healthcare currently operates within

Pigeons, fungi, human cells, finches and flowers are just some of the mediums of bioart and design. These emerging fields are the source of daring experiments and thoughtful reflections about how aspects of culture, such as our concepts of identity, nature and environment are changing.

Matter of Life presents nine such research projects at the intersection of art, design and the life sciences

The show goes from the very absurd (the Halliburton survivaball) to the very dark and dramatic. But the adjective that pervades the show is ‘fun’. While visiting the exhibition, i’ve been drinking cloud, watched a 1959 film that speculates on how weather control departments would use satellites and met with little child mannequins in Hazmat suits in the most unexpected places

The POLSPRUNG installation features a series of instruments that measure the earth’s magnetic field to detect a possible polar reversal, register the gamma radiation caused by the solar wind and compare the data with the speculative disastrous gamma radiation data during a polar reversal. A small reading space also provides information about polar reversal research and disaster speculation, a magnetite laboratory and a notebook in which visitors can write down their thoughts about disasters.

In this counterfactual speculation, a new Scotland is formed following a Yes vote in 1979′s Referendum for Independence.

The New Scottish Government creates a Sovereign Wealth Fund from oil revenues and enacts a number of bold laws with a generational perspective. These enable the citizens to achieve their own energy and economic independence

A Guide to the Flora and Fauna of the World is a catalogue of 55 curious creatures and life-forms that have evolved in often unexpected ways to cope with the stresses and pressures of a changed world. Other organisms documented iare the results of human intervention, mutations engineered to serve various interests and purposes ranging from scientific research to the desire for ornamentation

In this book, synthetic biologists, artists, designers, and social scientists investigate synthetic biology and design. After chapters that introduce the science and set the terms of the discussion, the book follows six boundary-crossing collaborations between artists and designers and synthetic biologists from around the world, helping us understand what it might mean to ‘design nature.’

Fortey believes that the natural progress of evolution is always towards greater richness, and that this is the way our planet is meant to be when Darwinian evolution is allowed to play out naturally. Mistaken ideas about Darwinism have contributed to a view of human life that diminishes rather than enhances richness, particularly in the Weltanschauung of market capitalism

Mind Maps explores how mental health conditions have been diagnosed and treated over the past 250 years. The exhibition looks at breakthroughs in scientists’ understanding of the mind and the tools and methods of treatment that have been developed, from Mesmerism to Electroconvulsive Therapy and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy bringing visitors up to date with the latest cutting edge research and its applications

Frederik de Wilde’s investigations don’t stop at nanotechnology and ultra black paintings, he also explores biotechnology, data networks, or any other scientific fields of research to uncover new frontiers of the intangible, inaudible, invisible.

That might sound highly conceptual but as the interview with the artist demonstrates research into elusive energy measurements and other barely perceptible phenomena quickly gives rise to reflections about politics, art history, economic emergency, universe hacking and very practical innovations in ‘clean’ energy

My guest in the studio tomorrow will be Nicola Triscott, the founder and Director of The Arts Catalyst, a UK arts organisation that sets up events, curates exhibitions, releases publications and commissions ambitious artworks that engage with science. The Arts Catalyst, believe or not, is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year so we’ll be talking about the art&science scene of the early 1990s and also about the embassy for The Republic of the Moon which the Arts Catalyst has opened a few days ago at the Bargehouse, Southbank, London

For her project Ergo Sum Charlotte Jarvis donated blood, skin and urine to the stem cell research laboratory at the University of Leiden. These donations have been transformed into stem cells, which in turn have been programmed to grow into cells with different functions such as heart, brain and vascular cells.

The result is a biological self-portrait; a second self; biologically and genetically ‘Charlotte’ although also ‘alien’ to her – as these cells have never actually been inside her body

The event brought together two men who share a passion for whales. One is environmental scientist and marine biologist Mark Peter Simmonds who investigates and raises awareness about an issue that is far away from our sights: the threats to the life of marine mammals caused by the increasing emissions of loud noise under water. The other is artist and inventor Ariel Guzik who has spent the last ten years looking for a way of communicating with cetaceans

Alternative Guide to the Universe focuses on individuals who develop their ideas and practices outside of official institutions and established disciplines. Their work ingeniously departs from accepted ways of thinking in order to re-imagine the rules of culture and science. Some of their speculative visions rival the wildest inventions of science fiction – with the difference that these practitioners believe in the validity and veracity of all that they describe and propose

Daniel Lombraña González tells me about Citizen Cyberscience Centre, an international collaborative project that invites volunteers to help the scientific community develop a whole range of projects that include: identifying and marking deforested areas with high-res Earth imagery, researching the elusive Higgs particle with a virtual atom smasher, understanding the fundamental laws of the universe, or the secrets of magnetism at the molecular scale

Very few artists manage to translate scientific phenomena into stunning images as elegantly as Carsten Nicolai. If you’re in London, don’t you dare miss Observatory at Ibid Projects.

The works on show visualise diverse physical occurrences. From the ground floor to the top floor, the installations, videos and photographic pieces investigate phenomena that get further and further away from our daily experience