I went to visit the space where my SciArt project will be exhibited later this month to begin to plan my presentation.
The venue is The Shed at MMU, near the John Dalton Faculty of Science and Engineering.
The room my module group will be exhibiting in has high ceilings in one part and a platform in another part. Under the platform are several contained areas. There are also glass doors that lead to other rooms.
Because I am working with microbes, I want to create a sense of intimacy: contained and close. I feel this reflects the invisible but ever present nature of microbes in our world (and on our bodies). The project is somewhat self-reflective (which could be called inward-looking) as it deals with my immediate environment of the artist studio. By choosing one of the smaller, alcove areas in the room I aim to create a sense of inviting the audience into both my world, and the world of microbes, made visible usually within the frame of a 90mm Petri dish.
Using one of the more open-plan/double-height celling areas would feel to vast, the microbes would get lost in the space (this also has a conceptual relevance but probably won’t achieve great aesthetic affect).
In the alcove area, there is the possibility of darkening the space. I can then introduce elements of lighting, for example back-lighting the Petri dishes. I can also consider creating a vinyl print to cover the glass doors, which could be lit from the other side.
My plan at the moment is to present a tray of photograph-lined Petri dishes in 3×3 formation at their current stage of growth. Alongside them I will provide some contextual information about microbes and my project. These could be designed as posters on foamboard. I am also interested in filming or creating a time-lapse of the microbial growth and presenting that alongside the ‘finished’ plates. The below diagram is a very crude mock-up, which I provided to my colleagues on the module to aid with planning the exhibition layout.