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Alison Irvine is a performance artist, biologist, and educator. She is the founding organizer and an Executive Board Member of the Biodesign Challenge — a global competition and educational program that pairs art and science students to envision the future of biotechnology. She graduated from Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts with a degree in Theater and Interdisciplinary Science and studied political theater at The Freie Universität in Berlin, Germany. She received the Hunt Fellowship for her work as a theater artist creating performances that centered on the emergence of new biotechnologies and their implications in the context of social and economic inequities. She researches creative practices that engage the public with basic science and new technologies in ways that promote social reflection and ethical scientific conduct. Recently, Alison was an artist-in-residence at The Innovative Genomics Institute and Stochastic Labs exploring the future of CRISPR gene-editing technology. She is currently an Adjunct Professor at the Albert Nerken School of Engineering at The Cooper Union in New York City. Alison has also written articles on the intersection of art, science, and social justice for Imagine Science Films, Popular Science Magazine, and The Center for Genetics and Society.

Presentations and Panels

Panel: “Artists Explore the Future of Genomic Innovation” - MAX Festival, 2019

Presentation: Artist Talk - Innovative Genomics Institute, 2019

Presentation: “A Peak at the Possibilities of Biodesign” - ECHO Dubai, 2017

Panel: “Living Technologies” - ECHO Dubai, 2017

Presentation: Design Against Denial Conference, City College of New York, 2017

Presentation: Parsons School of Design, 2017

Presentation: “Biodesign Challenge: A Lesson Across Disciplines” - Arizona State University, 2017

Workshop + Presentation: “Prototyping the Future of Cities” - Thought for Food Conference, Zurich, Switzerland, 2016


Reclaiming the Future, San Francisco - August 17th, 2019
Pieces Featured: Genetic Futures Series including Genomic Tapestries

Ars Electronica, Austria - September 5th - 9th, 2019
Pieces Featured: Genomic Tapestries #1 and #2