The Tissue Culture and Art Project(Oron Catts & Ionat Zurr)
Oron Catts is the Co-Founder and Artistic Director of SymbioticA the Art and Science Collaborative Research Laboratory, School of anatomy and Human Biology the University of Western Australia. He is the founder of the Tissue Culture & Art project (initiated in 1996).
Ionat Zurr is a member of the TC&A and a PhD candidate in SymbioticA. Oron & Ionat were Research Fellows in the Tissue Engineering and Organ Fabrication Laboratory, Harvard Medical School 2000-2001. They have presented their work (both as installations and oral presentation) extensively around the world, in Festival such as Ars Electronica (2000, 2001), CyberArts Festival Boston (2003), LArt Biotech in France (2003), the Live Art Conference in the Tate Modern (2003) and more. Their projects include the tissue culture & art(ifical) wombs, the Pig Wings Project, Disembodied Cuisine, Victimless Leather and a collaborative project with Stelarc Extra Ear _ Scale. They published in various art and science publications such as Leonardo.
The Tissue Culture & Art Project (TC&A) was set to explore the use of tissue technologies as a medium for artistic expression. We are investigating our relationships with the different gradients of life through the construction/growth of a new class of object/being that of the Semi-Living. These are parts of complex organisms which are sustained alive outside of the body and coerced to grow in predetermined shapes. These evocative objects are a tangible example that brings into question deep rooted perceptions of life and identity, concept of self, and the position of the human in regard to other living beings and the environment. We are interested in the new discourses and new ethics/epistemologies that surround issues of partial life and the contestable future scenarios they are offering us (see http://www.tca.uwa.edu.au ).