They’ve also launched a Kickstarter to “bathe” us in music.
You might have thought that digital music had rendered the possibility of any new formats unlikely, but a cross-disciplinary art project wants to share the first piece of music recorded onto DNA molecules if a Kickstarter campaign reaches its funding target.
Music of the Spheres is a collaboration between visual artist Charlotte Jarvis and British scientist Dr Nick Goldman, who have taken a piece of specially commissioned music from the Kreutzer Quartet and stored it as digital information in synthetic DNA molecules. The team have suspended the DNA in soap solution, and with the help of artistic production company Artists & Engineers they want to raise money to create installations where bubbles fill the air, pop on visitors’ skin and “bathe” the room in music.
It might sound far-fetched, but the technology to encode music in synthetic DNA was developed by Goldman and his team a few years ago, imitating the binary method computers use to store information digitally and swapping the 0s and 1s for the base chemicals that form DNA sequences. Music of the Spheres follows on from a similar project undertaken by Jarvis a few years ago when she encoded simple sentences in the DNA of bacteria.
Obviously the bubbles don’t actually play any music, but the installation is also planned to include a video projection that shows the Kreutzer Quartet playing the composition, falling silent during the second movement when the bubbles are released into the air. The team are looking for £5,000 to achieve their goal, and potential backer rewards include your own bottle of DNA-infused bubble solution and paintings made from music-encoded DNA being blown onto paper.
If backed, the team are hoping to hold installations at locations in London, Aldeburgh and the European Bioinformatics Institute in Saffron Walden, with hopes for live performances featuring the Kreutzer Quartet too. If you want to back the project or find out more, visit the campaign’s Kickstarter page.