"I found the process of joining forces with a scientist to be enlightening and inspiring."
"In a mutually supportive and engaging collaboration with [my partner], our conversations and blog entries helped to expand my perspective on how art and science can exist in a dynamic framework, how they each employ analytical thinking, intense observation, and structured inquiry. Both disciplines involve processes that balance creative play and exploration with a focused purpose."
"I have had a wonderful time being part of The Bridge program. It has helped me to become a better scientist as well as a better person... This program has catalyzed the incorporation of art in my classes."
"The Bridge Virtual Residency program has been a timely gift, offering an opportunity to have a deep and meaningful dialogue across disciplines..."
"[My partner] and I connected so well that we are planning to continue working together in the future."
"This residency has been inspiring and artistically productive... Our collaboration has brought up ideas I have not thought of before."
Yana Zorina (New York City, U.S.) is a neuroscientist with a lifelong passion for the arts. Yana received her Ph.D. in neuroscience from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City and currently works in a high content imaging facility at MSKCC. In her scientific career, she has always been attracted to microscopy as a means to take a closer look at the beautiful structures that compose the mammalian brain. In her artwork, Yana merges the two sides of the brain - artistic and scientific. In creating art, she uses her scientific knowledge to accurately recreate microscopy images into 3D-beaded renderings of cellular structures that can bring the beauty of scientific research to a wider audience. Yana views beads as analogs of pixels that we observe on a screen; she likes to turn microscopy on its head by transforming ultra-thin optical sections into 3D structures. Not only are microscopy images breathtaking to look at, they can also serve a greater purpose of communicating science to a wider audience and initiating conversations on difficult topics, such as neurological disorders.
Darcy Johnson (Vancouver, Canada) is a high school teacher and artist interested in the mind, memory and how the artistic process can be both a conduit into and a reflection of our interior worlds. Her abstract drawing is an unselfconscious way to uncover the workings of her own mental life and see the ways her experiences in the world are reorganized and filtered into her imagery. Darcy posits that every artist selects some “marks” or imagery, while dismissing others. In this way, the drawing becomes a representation of the mind that creates it. She explores this by taking spontaneous abstract drawings and then redraws them in various ways, such as changing scale or media. Because of her lifelong study of biology, her visual language contains elements of the natural world. Abstracted cells, seedpods, bone, and connective tissue are some of the important forms and metaphors she works with.
Stefanos Kourtis (Boston, U.S.) is a theoretical physicist seeking to understand emergent phenomena in correlated systems of matter and information. After graduating from the National Technical University of Athens, he received his PhD from Dresden University of Technology, and was awarded a postdoctoral fellowship at University of Cambridge and Princeton University. He currently works as a researcher at Boston University. Stefanos is also a self-taught sound artist. He has composed music and sound for theater, video games, and installations. He has performed at venues and festivals around Europe, and has had his recordings and remixes released on independent labels. Since 2006 he has run the electronic music label memoryformat. He is an enthusiast and practitioner of algorithmic sound synthesis and generative art forms, and has worked on a number of projects that bridge science and art.
Diaa Ahmed Mohamed Ahmedien (Cairo, Egypt) is a lecturer in the sciences of visual arts. He is an artist, educator, and researcher, focusing on the intersection between art, science, and technology.
His specialization lies in the areas of Holography, Interactive arts, Processes Arts, Neuro-aesthetics, and Visual Communication. Diaa graduated Magna cum laude with a PhD in Sciences of Visual Arts and New Media Arts from the University of Bern and the University of Applied Sciences Bern, Switzerland in 2017. He received his BA in Culture & Art, and his MA in Media-Arts from Helwan University, Cairo, Egypt in 2008 and 2011, respectively. Through his research and experimental artworks, Diaa examines several cutting-edge theoretical and empirical methodologies, seeking to answer questions like: How are scientific research and technological innovation able to reformulate 21st century aesthetics?
Montserrat Rabago Smith (Lansing, U.S.) is an Organic Chemistry Professor at Kettering University. Montserrat holds a PhD in Organic Chemistry from Michigan State University, and a Chemistry Bachelor’s Degree from Instituto Tecnologico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM), Mexico. Her research interests include the understanding of health benefits provided by natural antioxidants, and the exploration of the interactions of flavonoids with cellular proteins using chemical, biochemical, and cellular methods. Montserrat contributed to the establishment of Faculty Learning Communities across four different Universities in Flint, Michigan. She received the Center of Excellence in Teaching and Learning Faculty Fellow Award in 2016, the Center of Excellence in Teaching and Learning Educational Scholar Award, 2012, the University Outstanding Teaching Award, 2010, and the Educational Scholar Award, 2009. She is actively involved in many outreach programs.
Jo Yarrington (New York City, U.S.) is an artist living and working in New York City. Her drawings, photographs, and architecturally-based installations have been shown in exhibitions at Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Yale University, the Rotunda Gallery, the Museum of Glass, the DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park, Artists Space, and the Grounds for Sculpture in New Jersey, among others. She is currently represented by ODETTA Gallery, in Brooklyn. Her international exhibitions have included Galeria Sala Uno (Italy) and Centro de las Artes de Guanajuato (Mexico), among others. Yarrington is a recipient of grants and fellowships from the Pollock Krasner Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the MacDowell Colony, SIMS Residency/ Iceland, and the American Scandinavian Foundation, among others. In 2001, she represented the United States at the Sharjah Biennial, United Arab Emirates. She is a Professor of Studio Art in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts at Fairfield University in Fairfield, Connecticut.
Devika Nair (San Francisco, U.S.) currently oversees a large translational brain tumor project at the University of California San Francisco. The purpose of this study is determine whether anatomic and physiologic pre-surgery imaging parameters correlate with the molecular morphology of newly diagnosed and recurring gliomas. With this information, she and her team hope to better predict tumor transformation to higher grade and differentiate between tumor and treatment effects. Outside of the lab, she has co-produced episodes for Carry The One Radio: The Science Podcast, which is a series of interviews with scientists. Devika is also a trained Indian classical dancer. She hopes to explore different ways of incorporating aspects of dance, like precise movements and coordination, into her research. Devika obtained her BA in Psychology (Cognitive Sciences) from UC Irvine and is remotely pursuing her Masters in Individualized Genomics and Health from Johns Hopkins University.
Michael Vitaly Sazonov (New York City, U.S.) is a theatre-maker and Equity performer in New York City and his hometown of Washington, D.C. Creating documentary style theater with a social impact, he utilizes movement, music, and words to tell a story where each communicative discipline can take the reins of storytelling to help cross thresholds of understanding. From multi-disciplinary collaborations to immersive design elements and live performance techniques, he aims to bring an audience closer to someone’s story by curating a cross-pollination of communication within a theatrical experience - hopefully yielding a greater empathetic understanding of the transcendental truth in the process. While his curiosity thrives in conversation, collaborative fieldwork, source-material, and devised work, his wonder lies in the human body and how we take in moments of quotidian learning, especially in the wake of traumatic events. He believes in social practice, experiential learning, and radical kindness to get us closer to ourselves and each other.