Water of Life

Water of Life

Water is life: all Earthly organisms rely on water. Water is death: it drowns, floods, washes away. Water is life: even the purest water teems with untold millions of invisible micro├Ârganisms, many of which are necessary to human survival. Water is death: just as many of these organisms are deadly.

Water of Life

These dualities, and the vital part water plays in our lives, mean that water holds religious or mystical significance in almost every culture, and its starring role in the natural make it equally significant in science, medicine, and engineering.

Water of Life

Water of Life is a kinetic mixed media sculpture incorporating living organisms. A diaphragm pump circulates water containing Pyrocystis fusiformis, a species of marine dinoflagellate which, under the correct conditions, produces a blue bioluminescent glow. Through the combination of recycled materials, scientific apparatus, occult symbols, and living beings, Water of Life evokes a series of dualities: between life and death, science and mysticism, form and function.

Water of Life

Water of Life was exhibited in the Water Water Everywhere exhibition at the Bowman~Penelec~Megahan Art Galleries at Allegheny College in November 2015.

Water of Life Water of Life

The artist would like to thank the {K,Ch}rises, Kris Troy and Dr. Chris Lundberg, for providing technical assistance with the biological component of this work; and Byron Rich, for the last two photographs displayed on this page.