Loyola University Chicago

Loyola University Museum of Art


Media Contact:
Steve Christensen
Manager, Communications
Loyola University Chicago

Science as Art

Bioluminescent Bacteria Take Center Stage in "Living Drawings" Exhibition at Loyola University Museum of Art

CHICAGO, March 7, 2006 — The Loyola University Museum of Art (LUMA) introduces a new exhibition that combines both science and art in Living Drawings: Recent Works by Hunter O'Reilly. A Chicago native, O'Reilly has assembled a series of photographs of living bacterial drawings created in Petri dishes, along with works on paper and digital photography collages. The exhibit debuts on March 12, and runs through June 4, 2006.

In this unique exhibit, O'Reilly creates controlled line drawings using bacteria that are photographed throughout different stages, displaying both the life and death of the bacterial drawing. Also included in this exhibition are recent works on paper drawn spontaneously while listening to scientific seminars. These impulsive drawings include notes and symbolism used playfully by the artist to create full, sometimes surreal, well-worked compositions that reflect relationships between intellect and environment.

"Living Drawings showcases a unique partnership between science and art that reinforces LUMA's dedication to education and educational programming," said Pamela Ambrose, director of cultural affairs, LUMA. "The collection encourages the observer to explore artistic expression in a new way, and serves as an innovative addition to LUMA's galleries."

Both a practiced geneticist and an internationally-shown artist, O'Reilly blends art and science as she investigates new perspectives, understanding and ultimately new meaning of each discipline. In addition to her art work, O'Reilly, a Loyola University Chicago faculty member, has also created a course, Biology Through Art, which offers students the opportunity to create innovative artwork in a biology laboratory.

Public Programs:

Sunday, April 2 at 3:00 p.m.
Interpreting Science as Art: Bioart and Living Drawings
Free with museum admission 
William B. and Marilyn M. Simpson Lecture Hall (LUMA)

Hunter O'Reilly will discuss the works in her exhibition and how she interprets science as art in the creation of living artworks, abstractions, digital art and installations confronting issues related to biotechnology.

Sunday, May 21 at 2:00 p.m.
Spontaneous Drawing Family Workshop
$10 (members: one adult and one child) / $15 (non-members: one adult and one child)
Reservations are strongly suggested and can be made by calling 312-915-7630
William B. and Marilyn M. Simpson Lecture Hall (LUMA)

LUMA is offering a family workshop for children ages 5 - 12 and their parents. Families begin with an interactive tour of the Living Drawings exhibition and then are guided to the classroom to create a hands-on art project. Participants will draw, spontaneously to music, with eyes closed and based on themes from the microscopic world.

About LUMA
Opened in 2005, the Loyola University Museum of Art is dedicated to exploring, promoting, and understanding art and artistic expression that illuminates the enduring spiritual questions of all cultures and societies. As a museum with an interest in education and educational programming, LUMA reflects the University’s Jesuit mission and is dedicated to helping people of all creeds explore the roots of their faith and spiritual quests. Located at Loyola University Chicago’s Water Tower Campus, the museum occupies the first three floors of the University’s historic Lewis Towers on Chicago’s famous Michigan Avenue. For more information, visit the museum’s website at LUC.edu/luma.

Art illuminating the spirit!