Bacteria - our invisible guests

Biotalk 21 - with Victoria Shennan, Debora Dax, Merle Bergers

15 Sep 2016

Invisible micro-organisms have always co-existed with us. Within the human body, the vast majority of cells are bacterial, fungal, or otherwise non-human. What does this mean for our perception of body elements? In this edition of Biotalk, we will try to get under the skin of the everyday. The human body and its relation with other micro-organisms will be explored through art - translating invisible processes into something touchable.

Tickets / Facebook / We Are Public Selection


Microbial Mouthpiece - Microbial Mouthpiece by Victoria Shennan

Victoria Shennan

Victoria Shennan (UK) is an interdisciplinary designer with a background in jewellery design. Trying to make the invisible visible, she challenges what draws our attention. An important element in her work is the human body with all its facets - from organs to skin cells. Physical engagement with materials such as bacteria and minerals constitutes a vital part of Victoria's thought process, helping ideas percolate and allowing the immaterial to manifest itself into something palpable. For example, how many bacteria live in our mouth? And what is their composition?


Victoria Shennan talks about bacteria we have in our mouth - Anisa Xhomaqi

Debora Dax

Pubic hair, cellulite or wrinkles are body textures which many women try to avoid and hide. With her collection InConTextUre, designer Debora Dax (CH) tries to open-up a new perspective: She shows the variety and diversity of interesting surfaces (dry skin, stubbles and cellulite), delicate ornaments (wrinkles, love handles and beer belly) and beautiful color ranges (bruises, stretch marks and pubic hair). When will those appearances - that change with time - be seen as body decorations? In the work of the designer, the human body is used as a tool to observe, translate, implement and invent. By questioning and suggesting norms and needs, she explores boundaries and possibilities of body perception. How do our surroundings shape our body? It's worth to take a closer look.


Debora Dax at Biotalk - Debora Dax showing her designs live and explaining the meaning they have. Anisa Xhomaqi

With: Debora Dax

Merle Bergers

In her projects, Merle Bergers (NL) reveals a strong interest in biological processes like fermentation, as well as in "non-food" and eating experiences. Her designs, for example the "belly bar", engage with human organs, trying to raise awareness, interaction and conscience about our body-systems. She calls herself "an avid gut-sound producer and tear mineral collector with pet-scobies and sourdough mothers". Together with her fellow Design Academy student Food non Food Leif Czekai, she worked on the topic of the digestive system in an effort to improve the relation with our gut and gut-noises.
Expect a talk on guts and tears.


Merle wearing the Belly Bar - Merle Bergers wearing the Belly Bar during the Biotalk Anisa Xhomaqi

Biotalk: Bacteria - our invisible guests
Thursday 15 Sept., 20:30
Tickets: Students €5,- / Pre-sale €7,50 / Door €10,-
We Are Public Selection. (bring your student/public card to the ticketservice)
Mediamatic Biotoop, Dijspark 6, Amsterdam

Please note: this event is given in English.


Specimen - "Specimen" by Victoria Shennan