News october 2017

Speculation and Science: Where imagination meets science
Next week the Art Academy in Rotterdam, in cooperation with DNARepairMan and Erasmus MC, hosts a Studium Generale for her 3rd years students Commercial Practice about Art and Science. The goal is to interest the Art academy students in Science, so that they may choose to do a Project with the ErasmusMC, or with DNARepairMan.

The morning program, featuring a wide range of talks on the cooperation between arts and fundamental science, is open for everyone, and if you are interested please come! Details on the program can be found below. Participation is free, but please register at

Download poster.

Download program.


Moderator: Michelle Kasprzak,
9.00 – 9.10 Opening: Jeroen Chabot (dean WdKA), Rini de Crom (director Education and Research, Erasmus MC).
How could collaborations between science, art and design be established and organized? Where do art, design and science meet?
9.10 – 9.20 Program introduction: Joyce Lebbink, PhD (Molecular Science, Erasmus MC)
Dr. Joyce Lebbink will discuss the urgency of visually communicating experimental scientific research for a broader audience. Collaborations between science and the arts could lead to new professional opportunities for artists, designers, animators, data visualisers.
9.20 – 9.40 Science and/ in Society: Hidde Boersma, scientist, journalist, film maker.
Hidde Boersma will discuss how society is built on fundaments of basic research. What big societal issues are connected to fundamental research? How is this communicated? Topics include the role of mass media in communicating science: populism, media speculations, facts and/or fictions, fake news and finding truth in science.
09.40- 10.00 On speculation, science, communication: Paulien Melis, Creative Care Lab Waag Society.
What is the role of artists and designers in communicating science and scientific research? How speculations can be used to raise both questions and awareness.
10.00 -10.20 Empathic Experiences: Frank Kolkman, experimental designer.
Artist Frank Kolkman pushes the boundaries of medical science and its public perception. His projects ‘Outrospectre’ and ‘Open Surgery’ show how to make possible scenarios in medical science visible and almost tangible through speculative design. This speculation and his close collaboration with scientists create new insights, for example, by enabling us to feel the patients’ experiences. How can we explore extreme scenarios of empathic experiences, for example, in Service Design?
10.20- 10.40 coffee break
10.40- 11.00 Communicating Science. David Koop, strategist, Havas /Lemz
Advertising agency Havas/Lemz intends to raise awareness for complex and sensitive subjects in society. A famous example is Sweetie, a campaign against online child abuse for Terre des Hommes. Taking their strategy as a starting point, they will discuss how to communicate science/scientific research to a broader audience and raise awareness for it. How do you (re-)brand science?
11.00- 11.20 Data Design: Science & Design: (im)possible collaborations, Clever Franke & Robert Hofstra (Clinical Genetics, Erasmus MC).
Design agency C°F creates data driven experiences. An example is ‘Living Cell’ (a collaboration with the Genetics center Groningen), an interactive installation that allows viewers to delve into the micro-world of cells. C°F will discuss the (im)possibilities of working with scientific data and the need for specific skills for both scientists and designers.
11.20- 11.40 New Frontiers: SYMSE (Symbiotic Machines for Space Exploration)
Raoul Frese, PhD (Biophysics Photosynthesis/  Energy, VU) & Ivan Henriques, artist. 
Anthropocentric landscapes are characterised by reduced biodiversity and deteriorated ecosystems. In the meantime preparations are made for lunar and Martian habitats, requiring a tremendous advancement in the methods and instrumentation of ecosynthesis. How will scientists, engineers, artists and designers accomplish this? SyMSE aims to create an autonomous system for enhancing terrestrial ecosystems and facilitating atmospheric formation on other planets through artificial photosynthesis. Collaborators: VU Amsterdam, WdKA, CEFET-RJ, European Space Agency, FLiNT, CNRS, Synergetica (NWO- Research Through Design Award).
11.40- 12.15 Michelle Kasprzak, wrap up: interview with Joyce Lebbink, Robert Hofstra and Fred Balvert, communication officer Erasmus MC., introduction afternoon workshops.