Beyond the Lab: the DIY Science Revolution

Ars Electronica Center hosts a travelling exhibition
Beyond the Lab: The DIY Science Revolution

press release: Beyond the Lab: the DIY Science Revolution / PDF
photoalbum: Beyond the Lab – the DIY Science Revolution / Flickr
presentation Sparks 2017 / Prezi
Feature zur Ausstellung
story about Timothy Omer / Ars Electronica Blog
story about Anouk Wipprecht / Ars Electronica Blog
story about Lea und Jakob Illera / Ars Electronica Blog
story about Lucy McRae / Ars Electronica Blog

(Linz, March 29, 2017) “Beyond the Lab: The DIY Science Revolution” is a travelling exhibition curated by the Science Museum London that focuses on “do-it-yourself scientists.” It showcases people who are confronting problems like air pollution and antibiotics resistance, developing fully functional laboratories the size of a laptop, and administering online platforms to promulgate health care innovations developed by patients themselves. The exhibition also features three works created by artists in collaboration with the Ars Electronica Futurelab that visualize futuristic concepts at the nexus of science, technology and art, and that are relevant to both individuals and society as a whole. The exhibition is being supplemented by a series of talks and presentations as well as a Deep Space Weekend dedicated to this theme. “Beyond the Lab: The DIY Science Revolution” is running at the Ars Electronica Center in Linz until June 5th; then it moves on to Budapest, Hungary.

SPARKS – When Sparks Fly

“Beyond the Lab: The DIY Science Revolution” is part of the SPARKS project being conducted until early 2018 in 29 countries throughout Europe in conjunction with the EU’s Horizon 2020 initiative. SPARKS aims to encourage interested citizens, scientists and business people to engage in responsible research and innovation. The intention is for the creative spark to be transmitted from members of the general public to R&D professionals, and vice-versa. SPARKS is based upon close cooperation among 33 science centers, scientific institutions, universities, international networks and organizations in all EU member states and Switzerland.

Beyond the Lab: The DIY Science Revolution / People and Projects

Pieter van Boheemen: The DIY Antibiotics Hunters
Pieter von Boheemen lives and works in Amsterdam. His mission is to make biology accessible to all. His antibiotics project extends an invitation to people worldwide to contribute to solving one of the greatest medical challenges of our time: increasingly widespread resistance to antibiotics.

Bethan Wolfenden, Philipp Boeing: The Lab in a Box

Bethan Wolfenden and Philipp Boeing got acquainted at college, where they were put off by the fact that many people who were interested in biology had no way to get access to professional laboratories and equipment. This motivated them to develop a box—a container no bigger than a laptop—with room for all necessary scientific instruments. What began as a hopelessly cluttered assortment housed in an old suitcase is now a very functional device named Bento Lab—compact, affordable and user-friendly.

Sara Riggare: The Expert Patient
Sara Riggare was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2003. She immediately began to get informed about her condition and to share her comprehensive knowledge and her experiences with other patients online. In going about this, she uses numerous portable technologies in order to, for instance, record her pulse and sleep rhythm, observe her symptoms and customize her treatment. Sara Riggare encourages others with Parkinson’s disease to join online networks, to become experts about their diseases, and to reject one-size-fits-all solutions.

Pedro Oliveira and Helena Canhão: Patient Innovation
Pedro Oliveira and Helena Canhão founded Patient Innovation in 2014. At this online innovation hub, patients, their family members and care providers can present and share their DIY solutions and helpful ideas having to do with their respective diseases. Since its inception, more than 650 medically tested innovations and solutions have been posted by people from over 40 countries. Patient Innovation is published in several languages, and also supports users launching start-ups.

Tim Omer: The Diabetes Hacker

Tim Omer has diabetes. Frustrated by the fact that R&D was not progressing fast enough for him, he made it his mission to develop new and improved treatment devices for diabetes patients and to lower their health care costs. Physicians and charitable organizations warn against such do-it-yourself solutions, but diabetes hackers like Tim Omer retort by arguing that patients themselves have the best feel for what’s good for their body—and what isn’t.

Doreen Walther: The Mosquito Mapper
Doreen Walther is a scientist—more precisely, a mosquito expert. Since 2012 she has presided over Mosquito Atlas, a nationwide (German) network of hobby “mosquito hunters.” Since these insects can transmit dangerous viruses to human beings, Doreen Walther and her network are making an important contribution to helping the German health care system facilitate risk assessments and do modeling as to where to expect mosquito-borne diseases in the future and how to manage them.

Shazia Ali-Webber: The Campaigner for Clean Air
The air quality in London is among the worst of any European city. Shazia Ali-Webber is committed to improving London’s air. To do so, she uses air monitoring devices to measure pollution in her neighborhood. Citizen scientists like Shazia Ali-Webber often work together with professional scientists and utilize scientific facts so people can better understand their environment and be part of an effort to bring about positive changes.

Lucy McRae, Lotje Sodderland: The Institute of Isolation

Together with the Ars Electronica Futurelab, Lucy McRae created a short film relating the history of the Institute of Isolation, a fictional facility that offers human beings the possibility of optimizing their body through sensory deprivation and the experience of extreme isolation. The human brain and body occupy the focal point of McRae’s work. She’s especially interested in how genetics and medical technology will someday be utilized to enhance and upgrade human beings.

Anouk Wipprecht: Agent Unicorn
Dutch artist Anouk Wipprecht uses design and technology to improve the treatment of mental illnesses. Together with the Ars Electronica Futurelab, she developed 3-D printed headsets for use by kids with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder. Electrodes in the headset measure the youngsters’ brain activity and also activate the headset’s built-in camera. The resulting images provide insights into what attracts the wearers’ attention and what distracts them.

Jakob and Lea Illera: BeBots
Nanorobots that transport medications through our blood vessels and even perform operations could be navigating our bodies in the not-too-distant future. Jakob and Lea Illera have collaborated with the Ars Electronica Futurelab in creating BeBots, imaginary nanorobots that interfere with our nervous system to suppress our desire for sweets and fast food. Designed in response to the growth in diet-related diseases such as diabetes and obesity, Bebots examine a future in which we can all resort to DIY medical solutions that manipulate our fundamental thoughts and feelings.

The Program of Accompanying Events

The exhibition will be accompanied by a lineup of fascinating, participation-oriented events in the form of Science Espressos–i.e. brief science cafés—and workshops. These formats are meant to offer opportunities to interested members of the general public as well as those active in health care professions and medical fields to hear interesting talks, ask questions, identify new developments and discover answers to unsolved problems.

Scheduled Events:

The Anatomy Theater of the Future? Cinematic Rendering / Monday, April 3, 2017 / 7:30-9 PM
Sparks Reverse Science Café with Dr. Franz Fellner (Kepler University Clinic Linz) & Alice Reiter (program director, Upper Austria University of Applied Sciences for Health Professions)
Kepler Salon, Rathausgasse 5, 4020 Linz

Deep Space LIVE: The Amazing Human Hand: On Touching and Grasping / Thursday, April 6, 2017 / 7-8 PM // Sparks Science Espresso with Dr. Dietmar Hager (hand surgeon & micro-surgeon) Location: Deep Space 8K, Ars Electronica Center

Deep Space LIVE: Observation in the Age of High-Resolution Images / Thursday, April 13, 2017 / 7-8 PM // Sparks Science Espresso with Dr. Manuel Selg (Professor of Molecular Biology at the Upper Austria University of Applied Sciences’ Wels Campus) Location: Deep Space 8K, Ars Electronica Center

Shadowgram+ /Thursday to Wednesday, May 4-10, 2017
Sparks Pop-up Science Shop: “Future Health”
Location: Ars Electronica Center Lobby

Deep Space Weekend: Beyond the Lab / Saturday & Sunday, May 13-14, 2017
Location: Deep Space 8K, Ars Electronica Center

Deep Space Live: Cinematic Rendering / Thursday, May 18, 2017, 7-8 PM
Sparks Science Espresso with Dr. Franz Fellner (Kepler University Clinic Linz)
Location: Deep Space 8K, Ars Electronica Center

Pieter van Boheemen: The DIY antibiotics hunters / Fotocredit: Angela Moore / Printversion / Album

Dorren Walther: Die Mückenkartografin / Fotocredit: Angela Moore / Printversion / Album

Anouk Wipprecht: Agent Unicorn / Fotocredit: Marije Dijkema / Printversion / Album