Data Storing Bacteria
Data Storage & PhotographyFrom the Artist:
“I was amazed to find out that organic compounds could be used for data. I wanted to create a piece that would show this integration of organic and inorganic materials. To create the piece I took images (both analog and digital) to start with a base. I then manipulated the images using organic materials (such as bacteria and water). The images were then composited together through photoshop and duplicated many times to show the amount of data that could be replicated.”
Israeli student scientist Or Sagy wanted to see if he could use bacteria to duplicate stored data. Specifically magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) for digital magnetic data storage. MTB are bacteria found in a wide range of aquatic environments, which are characterized by their orientation towards magnetic fields (in nature towards Earth’s magnetic poles). Through utilization of the inherent division property of bacteria, this concept allows for passive duplication of data at an exponential rate, unlike the active duplication at a linear rate, which is commonly used today.
Joseph Minek is a photographer working in both digital and film who specializes in manipulation and layering. He is based in Cleveland, Ohio where he has been working for 8 years. Minek attended Cleveland Institute of Art and Virginia Commonwealth University, and received a teaching assistantship at VCU. His work has been exhibited across the United States of America.