The Residents

The Residents

The Synthetic Aesthetics residents have been working together in partnered exchanges. Between July and December 2010, each pair spent two weeks together in the laboratory and two weeks in the design/art studio. These exchanges have been documented by our team, and by the residents on their blogs, and the work continues to develop.

Christina Agapakis & Sissel Tolaas

iGEM / energy /
symbiosis / smell

Christina Agapakis is a synthetic biologist whose research explores the role of design, ecology, and evolution in biological engineering. Her scientific work spans many scales, from proteins to plants to microbial communities. full profile
With a background in mathematics, chemical science, linguistics and languages, and visual art, Sissel Tolaas has dedicated herself to Nose / Smell in all levels of life for more than twenty years. full profile

Hideo Iwasaki & Oron Catts

cyanobacteria / Bioart /
Tissue Culture

Hideo Iwasaki is working in the fields of both biological science and contemporary art. At his lab both fine/media artists and scientists share the benches for biology and art simultaneously. full profile
Oron Catts is an artist, researcher and curator whose work with the Tissue Culture and Art Project (which he founded in 1996) has been exhibited and presented internationally.  full profile

Sheref Mansy & Sascha Pohflepp

Protocells / Lipids /
Self-replication / critical design

Sheref Mansy obtained his bachelor's and doctoral degrees from Ohio State University. His research interests are in the development of in vitro reconstructions of life-like systems. full profile
Sascha Pohflepp is an artist, designer and writer. He is interested in past and future technologies, what they mean to us and how they inform which worlds come true and which worlds are discarded. full profile

Fernan Federici & David Benjamin

plants / architecture /
modularity / environment

Fernan Federici is a visiting investigator at PUC-Chile (PAI Conicyt-funded). He started his career studying two years of engineering at the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo (Argentina) and then moved to Chile to obtain a bachelor’s degree in molecular biology (PUC, Chile).
David Benjamin is Principal at architecture firm The Living, and Director of the Living Architecture Lab at Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. full profile

Mariana Leguia & Chris Chafe

Micro fluidics / oscillation /
construction sound

Mariana currently directs the Genomics and Pathogen Discovery Unit of the U.S. Naval Medical Research Unit No. 6, where she applies the latest molecular technologies to study tropical infectious diseases of public health importance. full profile
Chris Chafe is a composer, improvisor, cellist, and music researcher with an interest in computers and interactive performance. full profile

Wendell Lim & Will Carey

communication / Futures /
Industrial Design / tangibles

Wendell Lim is a Professor in the Departments of Pharmacology and Biochemistry at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. full profile
Will Carey is a designer who focuses on combining interaction and industrial design to create provocative and inspiring experiences. full profile