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Children’s DNA Self-Portraits

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School children in Britain have created sculptures of DNA using mainly natural materials like wood gathered at a nature reserve. The sculptures are “self-portraits” because the young artists designed them using personal information such as their heights and the sizes of their hands.

The teacher behind the sculpture program is Paul Goodrick, an environmental artist based in Kent, England. The program is called “Exploring Science through Art.”

“I thought that if each child made a DNA self-portrait sculpture using their own height, hand span and favorite colors, it would give a startling exhibition of many sculptures that were similar in design but individually different,” says the British sculptor.

"DNA and Nature," School/Community Art, Pfizer, ltd, Sandwich, Kent, U.K., 2002.

In his own art, Goodrick explores the relationship—and tension—between nature and the urban or industrial environment. He has been granted an Arts Council England Award that will allow him to extend his projects to other parts of the United Kingdom and Europe.

Paul Goodrick. "Willow DNA Spiral," 12 ft high, Year of Science project, Broad Oak Nature Reserve, Canterbury, U.K., 2002. The sculpture is a reconstructed willow tree.

Details of the school project on DNA and how the sculptures were made can be found here and the project outline here.

To see more paintings and current projects, visit the artist's Web site “Environmental Art and Sculpture.

—Related Article—

Gems of Life: DNA Jewelry


Birgit Reinert

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