Trudy M. Wassenaar

The Complex Relationship between Bacteria and Art
The relationship between bacteria and art is multilayered and complex. Bacteria can serve as a source of artistic inspiration or even directly produce (perishable) pieces of art, whether spontaneously or with the assistance of an artist. Yet, bacteria also are notoriously efficient at destroying works of art, made from a surprisingly wide variety of materials. Finally, we must consider the possible influence of particular infections on the works of some artists, while acknowledging, as well, the simple fact that bacteria have had an undeniable influence on the artistic output of our species by causing the premature deaths of a significant number of artists.