The first Artist in Residence has joined the Quadram Institute on a mission to enable scientists and the public to explore microbial science by making art.
Artist Jennie Pedley will be hosting workshops for scientists at the new institute on the Norwich Research Park.
The public are invited to events in schools and libraries to work alongside Jennie and the scientists to develop art installations that explore the institute’s research.
There are opportunities to join Jennie and the scientists for a series of four workshops at St Williams Way Library in Norwich on 23rd April, 30th April, 7th May and 14th May starting at 3:45pm. These free one-hour family workshops will involve building models, creating animations and making smoothies.
Further workshops will be held in local primary schools, and the Deaf Resource Base at Colman Junior School.
“This is a great opportunity for the public and scientists to be creative together, to discuss and respond to ground-breaking research. The Quadram Institute’s work can help us make the best choices about our health, in light of the importance of looking after the beneficial microbes that live in and around us” said Jennie.
“Exploring research through making art can lead to surprising results, who knows what will come of it? I am delighted to be working with the Quadram Institute and am grateful for the support of Arts Council England and Norfolk County Council.”
The project will bring together scientists and the public to create model worlds. These will go on display at the Norwich Science Festival in October. They will capture the exciting research ongoing within the Quadram Institute that’s linking the microbiome, the community of trillions of microbes in our gut, with our health throughout our lives.
Initially, Jennie is working with the award-winning Dr Lindsay Hall and her research group at the Quadram Institute. They are particularly interested in the influence of the microbiome on health in the very early stages of life which could influence the development of food allergies and diseases.
Jennie will also be working with scientists to explore the influence of gut bacteria on our immune systems, on our mental health and on dementia.
“This is an exciting and visually engaging way of bringing the wonders of the gut to life through art – showcasing how Quadram Institute research scientists and members of the public ‘see’ their gut and the role that it, and their resident microbes play” said Lindsay.
Jennie’s residency with the Quadram Institute has been funded with money from the government and the National Lottery by Arts Council England, by Norfolk County Council and is being supported by the SAW (Science Art and Writing) trust and Norwich Science Festival.
You can follow the progress of this project on social media at @jenniepedley or #artofthegut or at www.jenniepedley.co.uk/art-of-the-gut