Claire Hamer used university's state-of-the-art electron microscopes for final art project
15 Aug 2013
Our Fine Art MA graduate Claire Hamer benefited from some forward-thinking interdisciplinary collaboration when she utilised the School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences' state-of-the-art particle imaging facilities to complete her final project.
Claire's project (which was exhibited at the 2011 Fine Art MA show) explored the notion of existence and her place and interaction within the wider environment. Over a period of time she documented her daily commute from home to the studio using film, photography, prints and collected objects. She was inspired by her project supervisor, Prof Charlie Hooker, to look at the possibility of capturing these items using the university's electron microscopy facilities and investigating in much finer detail "the microscopic substances and particles that we collect on our skin and hair, just through existing in our environments".
"These images were then referenced to formations and imagery on a continuum, thus evoking questions of scale and materiality," explained Ms Hamer.
After Claire's application to the 2010-11 Quorum Technologies electron microscopy support fund was accepted, she worked with Dr Jonathan Salvage, Research Fellow and Academic Lead for the Image and Analysis Unit, to capture the high resolution scanning electron microscopy (SEM) images of her samples.
Dr Salvage said: “working with Claire Hamer on her project was both technically challenging and enjoyable, and the end results very satisfying. For scientific publications, SEM images are normally expected to be balanced in terms of contrast and brightness across the grey scale range, but Claire’s artistic views differed from that norm, and stark extremes of brightness and contrast were often employed to give the images an atmospheric quality. "Claire’s enthusiasm and dedication for her art, and willingness to work hard and engage with new concepts and scientific technologies really impressed me.”
Further details of the scheme can be found on the Quorum Prize Scheme webpage.