March 4, 2013

High-Tech Art Show Reveals the Unexpected Beauty of Science

“Art of Systems Biology and Nanoscience” event exposes the exquisite world of the microscopic on March 29 and 30 in Santa Fe

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What you can’t see with your naked eye may be far more beautiful than you can imagine. The goal of the “Art of Systems Biology and Nanoscience” event is to share fascinating scientific images of nature at its tiniest and most stunning. This year’s annual event runs March 29 and 30 at 333 Montezuma Arts in Santa Fe.

The images depict nature at the nanometer scale; the diameter of a human hair is 40,000 nanometers. At this magnification, systems biologists can directly observe living cells and study them as they undergo complex changes. Using techniques and tools developed by nanoscientists, they can even manipulate cells and molecules at this level to conduct experiments.

The event offers several experiences. The art show will display photo micrographs, scientific illustrations and animations from two award-winning and internationally-renowned artists, Drew Berry from Walter and Eliza Hall Institute in Australia and Thomas Deerinck from the University of California at San Diego. Additional  images generated by University of New Mexico systems biologists and nanoscientists further demonstrate that life, even at this miniscule scale, can be immensely beautiful. On Saturday children, teachers and adults with childlike curiosity can enter the teeny-tiny world through interactive experiments led by graduate students from the UNM Nanoscience and Microsystems degree program and the New Mexico Cancer Nanotechnology Training Center.

In the evenings, two senior scientists will give talks that describe how they use imaging technologies to  solve key problems in human biology. Mark Ellisman, PhD, Professor of Neurosciences and Bioengineering and Director of the National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research at University of California, San Diego will speak about how he uses advanced imagery to discover how brain cells develop and function. Angela Wandinger-Ness, PhD, Professor of Pathology and Director of the Fluorescence Microscopy and Cell Imaging Shared Resource at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center, will talk about how she uses advanced microscopy in combination with other nanoscience tools to discover how abnormalities in the way cells move proteins may cause polycystic kidney disease and cancer.

“These images are simply lovely,” says Janet Oliver, PhD, Regents Professor of Pathology, Director of the New Mexico Cancer Nanoscience and Microsystems Training Center at the University of New Mexico, and a member of the Hematologic Malignancies Research Program at the UNM Cancer Center. Dr. Oliver is the lead event organizer. “Everyone can appreciate the exquisite beauty in them.”

About the Art Show
The fourth annual “Art of Systems Biology and Nanoscience” event is a two-day public celebration of new and fascinating ideas and images from the two emerging scientific fields of systems biology and nanoscience. The event will take place March 29 and 30 at 333 Montezuma Arts in the Railyard area in Santa Fe. The entire event is free and open to the public.

The event will be open from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday March 29 and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 30. Dr. Ellisman and Dr. Wandinger-Ness will give their public talks at 6 p.m. on Friday and at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday. The children’s interactive nanotechnology experiments will take place 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday. Wine and cheese receptions, held each evening from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., are open to the public but require preregistration. For a full agenda and to preregister for the wine and cheese receptions, please visit

The event is sponsored by the UNM Cancer Center; the New Mexico Center for the Spatiotemporal Modeling of Cell Signaling; the New Mexico Cancer Nanotechnology Training Center; the Los Alamos National Laboratories Center for Non-Linear Studies; the LANL Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies; The Art and Science Laboratory; and the host gallery, 333 Montezuma Arts.


About the UNM Cancer Center
The UNM Cancer Center is the Official Cancer Center of New Mexico and the only National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center in the state. One of just 67 NCI-designated cancer centers nationwide, the UNM Cancer Center is recognized for its scientific excellence, contributions to cancer research and delivery of medical advances to patients and their families. Annual federal and private funding of over $65 million supports the UNM Cancer Center’s research programs. The UNM Cancer Center treats more than 65 percent of the adults and virtually all of the children in New Mexico affected by cancer, from every county in the state. It is home to New Mexico’s largest team of board-certified oncology physicians and research scientists, representing every cancer specialty and hailing from prestigious institutions such as MD Anderson, Johns Hopkins and the Mayo Clinic. Through its partnership with Memorial Medical Center in Las Cruces, the UNM Cancer Center brings world-class cancer care to the southern part of the state; its collaborative clinical programs in Santa Fe and Farmington serve northern New Mexico. The UNM Cancer Center also supports several community outreach programs to make cancer screening, diagnosis and treatment available to every New Mexican. Learn more at


UNM Cancer Center contact information
Dorothy Hornbeck, JKPR, (505) 340-5929,
Michele Sequeira, UNM Cancer Center, (505) 925-0486,


Tags: community, Press Release Archive 2013