Open Call “Science Inspires Art: Food”

New York Hall of Science

Entry Deadline: Jun. 20

47-01 111th Street
Queens, NY 11368-2950
(505) 990-0781

This international competition exhibition seeks your aesthetic speculations and cultural interventions on the topic of FOOD; from the historical record to molecular gastronomy, food safety and seed security, new food production systems, food waste, and your backyard! We’d like images of your original art executed in any media (including animation or video stills).

The negative effects of climate change (rising sea levels and global temperatures, droughts, flooding, and extreme weather events) are challenging the sustainability and wisdom of our current agriculture and meat production systems. FOOD has become the central focus of an urgent global debate on how to feed our planet’s projected 9-billion people by 2050 (World Health Organization) without increasing our greenhouse gas footprint.

We are increasingly aware of where our food comes from, how it is produced, and how it gets from farm to table. We judiciously read labels sleuthing for GMO ingredients, we try to “buy local” to reduce transportation greenhouse gases, and if we can afford it, we buy organic to reduce exposure to toxic fertilizers and pesticides, some of which are known carcinogens. We even adjusted to bringing reusable shopping bags to the market to reduce single-use plastics pollution.

Since FOOD is on the frontlines of our future sustainability, we want to see what artists and scientists are thinking about and creating in the face of the new complexities posed by climate disruption. What are their reactions to the science of food security and safety, nutrition, food health disorders or obsessions, edible front yards, eating insects, or even to the recent technological innovation of “printing” a personalized 3D meal on a plate, or growing furniture (and future houses) out of mushrooms!

ENTRY DEADLINE: June 20, 2016

Introducing Competition Co-Jurors:


Clive Adams is a British curator with over 40-years experience of showing the work of contemporary artists whose work engages with nature. In the aftermath of foot-and-mouth disease in the UK in 2001, he curated a major exhibition that explored artists’ responses to livestock farming in Britain over 300 years, and in 2006 he founded the Centre for Contemporary Art and the Natural World (CCANW), delivering programmes which ranged in topics from the use of sustainably grown timber in architecture to eco-fashion. CCANW’s most recent project, “Soil Culture,” used the arts to inspire a deeper public understanding of the importance of our soils and the threats they face today. This imaginative art-science project was a major contribution to the United Nations’ 2015 International Year of Soils program with touring exhibitions, numerous activities, and an artist residency programme that attracted over 600 applications from 39 different countries. CCANW is now based at Schumacher College in Devon, UK, and is supported with funding from Arts Council England and the UK’s Heritage Lottery Fund.



Martha (Marti) Crouch is a consulting science expert, working mainly for nonprofit public interest groups such as Center for Food Safety, and focuses on the relationships between biotechnology, agriculture and the environment. She received a B.S. in botany at Oregon State University, followed by an M.S. and Ph.D. in plant developmental biology from Yale University, and was an Associate Professor of Biology at Indiana University (IU) for 20 years, teaching and doing research on the molecular biology of seeds and flowers. Her classes at IU ranged from specialized graduate seminars on plant physiology to interdisciplinary undergraduate courses such as “The Biology of Food,” “The Ecology of Everyday Life,” and “Life Through the Eyes of a Potato: the Changing Face of Agriculture.” In 2001, Marti left academia out of a concern for the potentially harmful impacts of genetic engineering in agriculture and her own lab’s contributions. Besides continuing to consult on these issues, she also volunteers her scientific expertise by teaching in organic education programs, and inspecting wild mushrooms at the Bloomington Community Farmers’ Market.

A 2015 report by Marti for the Center for Food Security is: Agricultural Insecticides Imperil Waterways at

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