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Rebecca Kamen

Divining Nature, 2008 Mylar, Fiberglass Rods

Rebecca Kamen is an artist who has been deeply engaged in the STEM to STEAM dia- logue, exploring the nexus of art and science. Kamen’s work has been informed by wide ranging research into cosmology, history, philosophy and science. She presents scien- tific ideas using the open language of fine art, as a means to begin a discourse about the connections between art and science. Similar to the metamorphosis of an atom that becomes a new element when the number and arrangement of its parts changes, Kamen transforms chemistry’s Periodic Table of letters and numbers into sculptural elements based on geometry and atomic number. Kamen relates the periodic table to a garden as a transformational space where matter changes from one state to another. The design was inspired by a Buddhist mandala, which traditionally depicts a cosmological view of the universe, as well as a Fibonacci Spiral, the geometry of nature. Translated into poetic physical form, her installation

invites the viewer to engage at human scale with this symbolic scientific image.

Bio-musician Susan Alexjander contributed a haunting soundscape inspired by the wave frequencies emitted from atoms in the elements, adding a new dimension to the experience of the sculpture and installation.

Bio Rebecca Kamen’s work explores the nexus of art and science, informed by wide ranging research into cosmology, history, philoso- phy and science. She has utilized scientific collections as a muse in the creation of her work, including at the libraries of the American Philosophical Society, the Chemical Heritage Foundation, and the Cajal Institute in Madrid. Kamen has exhibited and lectured both nationally and internationally in China, Hong Kong, Chile, Korea, Egypt, and Spain. She has been the recipient of a Virginia Mu- seum of Fine Arts Professional Fellowship, a

Pollack Krasner Foundation Fellowship, two Strauss Fellowships, a Travel Grant from the Chemical Heritage Foundation, and an artist residency in the neuroscience program at National Institutes of Health. From 2011-2013 as a Chancellor’s Commonwealth Professor at Northern Virginia Community College, Rebecca investigated how art and creativity can be used to enhance our understanding of science. As part of this project she has de- veloped an art component for George Mason University’s Aspiring Scientist Summer Intern (ASSIP) program, as well as one at National Institutes of Health that encourages science interns to use art to interpret their research.

Kamen is currently working on collaborative art/science projects at Harvard University’s

Center for Astrophysics and in the Neurosci- ence Division at the National Institutes of

Health. Her artwork is represented in many private and public collections.


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