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George Gessert is an artist whose work focuses on the overlap between art and genetics. His exhibits often involve plants he has hybridized or documentation of . George Gessert has a BA from the University of California, Berkeley, and an MA in fine art from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. From to the present. George Gessert THEIR SILENCE IS A GIFT Interview by Arjen Mulder The question of beauty is a natural one for breeders of ornamental plants and flowers for.

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With ornamental plants, the foundation of partnership is mutual survival. Signs of Life is the first book to focus exclusively on art that uses biotechnology as its medium, defining and discussing the theoretical and historical implications of bio art and offering examples of work by prominent artists. What is it that moves you most about plants and flowers? I attend to color, pattern, form.

One can emphasize qualities distinctive to particular breeding complexes.

This is rather surprising, considering that until relatively recently nonhuman organisms were not exhibited in galleries. Art and biology bibliography by George Gessert 1 edition published in in English and held by 1 WorldCat member library geogre.

By becoming more aware of those plant communities and where the ones that were favorable to irises could be found, I became more attuned to the part of the United States I live in, more at home. Towards an art of Evolution.

Letter by George Gessert

El Geseert transgredit Book 3 editions published in in Catalan and held by 11 WorldCat member libraries worldwide. I had promised flowers, but presented instead a not very interesting mass of seed pods and grassy leaves. What are you looking for when you grow plants: The context for this search is simultaneously cultural and ecological — natureculture, to use Donna Haraway’s term.

Economics dominates the horticultural industry and strongly influences aesthetics, but the underlying problem is consumer culture.


Bioart through evolution: George Gessert

In geotge context of art, plants have become one more accepted medium that can convey different, even contradictory values. The estate had a small sunken garden with marigolds and other bedding plants. Gessert creates his artistic irises by hybridizing wild varieties and discarding undesirable results.

From ink spots to plant breeding was only a small step. I still don’t know the answer. I paired irises that had characteristics I liked, hoping that whatever was good in the parents would come together in the offspring.

But the question drew me into considering how complex our relationships are with other species and how other forms of life can sometimes benefit from the human desire for aesthetic pleasure. The transition to plant breeding was through painting on Japanese papers, which absorb water and pigments in unpredictable ways. What kind of criteria do you use that allow you to call your breeding practice “bio art”?

But when you grow and hybridize plants for your bio art projects, you don’t seem to be aiming for the sort of shocking, overwhelming, awe-inspiring effects I associate with the sublime in the arts.

Notes on genetic art by George Gessert 1 edition published in in English and held by 1 WorldCat member library worldwide. Feorge very first night we got good pictures of two foxes sorting through the kitchen scraps.

Such an animal might have considerable aesthetic appeal.

From to the present his work has focused on the overlap between art and genetics. Traditional Western dualism maintains that art ggessert one thing, nature another, and never the twain shall meet except in specialized ways in landscape architecture. Often I don’t know.

gdorge If plant breeders only follow an economic logic in the selection of plant flower forms, what kind of logic do you follow when selecting specific plants for hybridization? Good plant-breeding projects accommodate the variety and mutability of desire.

Remember me on this computer. He discusses some of the aesthetic and ethical issues involved in using DNA in art. Lass smugly implies is artistic hyperventilation, underscores what should be obvious, that even humanly created organisms belong to the community of life.


I didn’t know what a skunk was, but from the intensity of her reaction, I assumed it must be a monster. For example, I used to collect Pacifica irises from the wild. Beauty and terror meet in the sublime.

Gessert, George 1944-

Unfortunately new problems arose. In one memory, flowers are frightening. Will it speed the commodification of life? Most breeders have other aims. Someday, perhaps, there will be new kinds of art spaces to accommodate nonhuman life, spaces that combine features of galleries, gardens, menageries, and wilderness. To collect interesting variants, I had to learn about the environments in which Pacifica irises live. Does it aestheticize the biological revolution?

Having a vision is necessary for any breeding geasert, but can becomes a hindrance when it is too rigidly adhered to. George Gessert is a bioart pioneer. Gforge makes plants “beings at the very center of human life? If you could choose, would you want to become a plant — maybe reincarnate as a Pacifica iris?

Later I learned that plants have great powers. I select against ruffling in irises, because it destroys their distinctive form and makes them look like other ruffled flowers: But beauty in commercial breeding is defined and limited by commercial concerns: Doubles and ruffles sell.

Bloomsbury, by George Gessert 1 edition published in in English and held by 1 WorldCat member library worldwide. Except for museum courtyards and atriums, most galleries are architecturally designed to protect canvases from rain and sun, and prevent birds from nesting in sculptures.

I look for integrity of form and exceptional presence.