Svenja Kratz is an interdisciplinary Brisbane-based artist who utilises traditional and new media arts practices to explore the impact of new technologies on concepts of the self, other and the body.
Svenja originally trained in interdisciplinary and collaborative arts practice at Griffith University on the Gold Coast majoring in Contemporary Art and Creative Writing. Since graduating with honours in 2003 she has produced a number of works both independently and collaboratively, including painting, photomedia, interactive installation and online hypermedia writing projects. These works have been exhibited in numerous galleries and events throughout Australia.
She is currently working within the area of biotechnology, completing a PhD in bio-media arts at Queensland University of Technology in a creative partnership between the Creative Industries Faculty and the Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation (IHBI).
Kratz’s research project used cell and tissue culture to explore the body as a site of active transformation. Inspired by numerous scientific publications which suggest that the transfer of viral and bacterial DNA played a crucial role in human evolution, this project aimed to induce and map the transformations that occur to human cells in culture, following the introduction of viral DNA and exposure to selected bacteria. Changes to cellular appearance and function were documented, using a combination of microscopy and laboratory tests. It is anticipated that on return, this data will be used to develop a series of interrelated new media and fine arts works exploring the transformative potential of viral and bacterial agents and possible influence in evolutionary processes.
This three month residency was funded by ACID and IHBI (Tissue Repair and Regeneration).
February – May 2010