BioFacts 2020–2022

Yeastogram workshop with Johanna Rotko
posted by Erich Berger on 24 June 2020

Yeastogram workshop with Johanna Rotko

       Dates: 24.8, 25.8 and 27.8, 16-20h

       Place: SOLU Space, Luotsikatu 13, 00160 Helsinki Finland

Application: please send an email with a statement of motivation and a CV to our info address

Application deadline extended to August 21st! 

Possibility of remote participation: If you would like to form a remote hub with local on-site participants then please send us a message. Please send us an expression of interest by August 10th.

Please note: whether or not the workshop can take place will depend on the state of the COVID-19 pandemic. We will make a final decision in mid-August.

Johanna Rotko will give a workshop where participants learn how to make yeastograms. In this three-evening workshop, you will learn to make rasterized images, make a suitable growth medium for yeast and and the process and technology on how to expose the images with UV light.

Yeastograms are formed by cultivating yeast on a biological growth media to create images out of conventional photographs. Raster images printed on film are exposed with Ultraviolet LED lamps onto cultivated yeast in petri dishes. After approximately 48h, the yeast cells exposed to UV are killed or injured and the ones sheltered by the black parts survive, and the yeasts form the image on the growth medium.

Johanna Rotko is a visual artist working with living materials, mainly different yeasts. She was first introduced to yeastograms in 2013 during a workshop organized by artist collective Pavillon_35 and the Bioart Society, and has been working with yeast images since then. In her works Rotko explores the themes of transiency, material loss, change and time. She currently focuses on different yeast species, biological colours and the many purposes of yeast. Rotko's works have been exhibited in Mänttä, Dublin, Oulu, Corwallis, Helsinki, Kotka, Dortmund, Tokyo and Paris. The workshop will take place during the Living Images exhibition of Johanna Rotko.

Timetable, each day 16-20h:

Monday 24.8. Making rasterized images
Tuesday 25.8. Making agar plates and exposing them to UV-light
Thursday 27.8. Exploring the results

The workshop is part of BioFacts - a programme that consists of a series of artistic research work labs. During 2020, the programme introduces fundamental techniques of working with biological arts and serves as a vehicle to discuss art and science, materials, techniques, safety and policy, biopolitics, ethics as well as artistic examples through hands-on work. 
BioFacts is supported by the Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation.