Many-Faced God-Like Project: Artist Created 3D Portraits of Strangers Using Stolen DNA from Gum and Cigarette Butts

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The artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg had been collecting gum, cigarette butts, hair and nails in the subway at stops and other public places in New York for her DNA project. See what happened next! 

Stranger Visions

Like a criminologist, Heather Dewey-Hagborg carefully folded the samples of gum and cigarette butts in sterile bags. In the laboratory, Dewey-Hagborg obtained from them the DNA of passers-by and, using a computer program, decoded the genetic information.

She managed to reconstruct the phenotype of strangers and create models of their faces. Then the artist printed out the masks of humans on a 3D printer. According to Heather, in the project Stranger Visions she wanted to show how much information about ourselves we leave on the street every day.

‘I extracted DNA from them and analyzed it to computationally generate 3d printed life size full color portraits representing what those individuals might look like, based on genomic research,’ stated Dewey-Hagborg in her post.

Source: deweyhagborg.com

It’s definitely as cool as it sounds, but at the same time the whole idea might seem a little bit creepy and resemble the House of Black and White, a temple dedicated to the Many-Faced God in ‘Game of Thrones’ universe.

Source: deweyhagborg.com.

Source: deweyhagborg.com

‘Working with the traces strangers unwittingly left behind, the project was meant to call attention to the developing technology of forensic DNA phenotyping, the potential for a culture of biological surveillance, and the impulse towards genetic determinism,’ explained Dewey-Hagborg.


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Summary
Many-Faced God-Like Project: Artist Created 3D Portraits of Strangers Using Stolen DNA from Gum and Cigarette Butts
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Many-Faced God-Like Project: Artist Created 3D Portraits of Strangers Using Stolen DNA from Gum and Cigarette Butts
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The artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg had been collecting gum, cigarette butts, hair and nails in the subway at stops and other public places in New York for her DNA project. See what happened next! 
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