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We continue taking a look back as we go forward. This spring we are talking with some of our past participants, to see what they are up to, and to ask if their respective Catalyst conversations have stayed with them, how have they changed, and how they are dealing with the current moment. Director Deborah Davidson will continue that conversation with some of our wonderful speakers, both scientists and artists. Join us on Zoom this spring as we continue on an online version of our programs!

April 28, 10-11am EST - Heather Dewey Hagborg 

Heather Dewey Hagborg participated in a program early on in the history of Catalyst. She is an artist and biohacker who is interested in art as research and technological critique. Her controversial biopolitical art practice includes the project Stranger Visions in which she created portrait sculptures from analyses of genetic material (hair, cigarette butts, chewed up gum) collected in public places. She says that since 2001, “I’ve been working at the intersection of art and science, with an emphasis on conceptions of the natural and the artificial. Drawing from diverse fields including biology, computation, sculpture, and critical design, I view art as an open field in which any discipline can become subject and material. I utilize art as practice-based research with which to probe the deep and often hidden structures of media/technology/science that dominate the contemporary moment and frame our cultural imagination.

Heather is joining us from Abu Dhabi where she is a visiting assistant professor of interactive media at NYU, Abu Dhabi. Bring a cup of coffee and join us for this special morning conversation. The program will be recorded and available online for those who can't join live. 

Revisit the earlier Catalyst Conversations event with Heather, October 1, 2013, Genomics, Heather Dewey Hagborg and Bang Wong

Reserve Free Tickets

L: Heather Dewey Hagborg R. Probably Chelsea 2017 is a collection of thirty different possible portraits of whistleblower Chelsea Manning algorithmically-generated by an analysis of her DNA. While she was in prison, forbidden from being visited, she sent me cheek swabs from which I could extract DNA to create her portrait. Genomic data can tell a multitude of different stories about who and what you are. Probably Chelsea shows just how many ways your DNA can be interpreted as data, and how subjective the act of reading DNA really is.

We are grateful to the Cambridge Arts Council, our founding partner, as well as the Catalyst Conversations Governing and Advisory Boards for their advice, connections, funding and feedback. We thank our wonderful volunteers for their time and generosity both behind the scenes and at our events. A special thanks to our donors who help us bring free public programming to Greater Boston and beyond. 
Copyright © 2021 Catalyst Conversations, All rights reserved.

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