Science and Art

The scientific work conducted at the MRC Mitochondrial Biology Unit has served as inspiration for public exhibitions through engagement with artists and designers. Visualization is an integrated part of our research process, and even though we produce state-of-the-art images for scientific use and for journal publications, we strongly believe that through engagement with artists and designers we form valuable ways of making the microscopic world more understandable to a wider public. At the MRC Mitochondrial Biology Unit we are very aware of the importance of artistic interpretation of our scientific ideas and results, and we are highly committed to this kind of public engagement. We have had a considerable degree of success in collaborating with artists and designers, and new projects are regularly planned.

For further information about the activities of the Unit, please contact our Communications Manager, Penny Peck: .

The Fox Got You

The Fox Got You is an art and science project celebrating six common plants which are at the origin of five major medicinal drugs.

Scientists at the MBU collaborated with the photographic artist, Francoise Sergy, whose exhibition was shown at the Oxford Botanic Garden during the summer of 2015.

At a public event on Saturday, 11 July, visitors met the artist and the scientists, clinicians and patients involved in the project, who talked about their work and experiences. 

Cambridge Science Festival 2010

Working together with designers Rachel Wingfield and Mathias Gmachl, we explored new ways of representing the molecular world at this year's Science Festival in Cambridge. We invited people to colour a 2.20 x 6 metre mural of a mitochondrial network. Children of all ages and adults engaged in this mitochondrial paint-by-numbers event. The first step was, via a computer test, to find out which colour each visitor preferred.

Metabolic Media

Loop.pH’s artworks investigate how scientific discoveries on a molecular level can be scaled up to architectural dimensions. The three dimensional model or space aids the understanding of complex form and enables a conversation about structure across different fields of art and science.