Artist Film-maker Katie Goodwin, Terence Preston, Honorary Senior Lecturer in Research Department of Genetics, Evolution & Environment and Professor of Political Aesthetics Esther Leslie Of Birkbeck College, University of London discuss issues raised by Katie's film Small Wonders, an immersive 3D film exploring the lives of micro-organisms and protozoons living within the surface-water of lakes & ponds.
The film is the result of a collaboration between the artist filmmaker Katie Goodwin and microbiologist and UCL Honorary Senior Lecturer Terence M Preston. Drawing from over 40 years of Preston’s research into the movements of these tiny organisms, some of which are human pathogens, whose habitat cover the majority of the Earth, the artist is creating an abstract-narrative short film.
The film combines Preston's image archive, including a 1972 microscopic 16mm film from a cutting-edge experiment, with cine footage of people interacting with ponds and lakes and fragments of conversations recorded with Terence, a compelling and enthusiastic storyteller. The artist's intention is to give the viewer an insight into this hidden world through surround sound and 3D projection technologies and transfer some of this wonder and fascination to the viewer. The surround-sound audio track will be created in collaboration with composer Wayne Urquhart.
The South London based artist-filmmaker, Katie Goodwin, is a graduate of Goldsmiths & Wimbledon Colleges of Art. Goodwin is a kind of cinematic magpie reanimating found footage to create moving image installations that reveal the hidden or lost image. Her work has shown in the touring shows: 971 Horses & 4 Zebras at Tate Modern (2012) & CAST, Tasmania (2013); and Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2011 at ICA, and Sheffield’s S1 Artspace. Residencies include the Pixel Palace residency at Tyneside Cinema in Newcastle Upon Tyne and the Jealous Print Prize for Wimbledon (2011). She has a background working on feature films such as several of the Harry Potter films & Charlotte’s Web.
1964-67 Postgraduate training in Trypanosoma biology at UCL (supervisor K.Vickerman, FRS.)
1967-2008 Undergraduate & Postgraduate teaching at UCL in parasitology, cell biology, microscopy. Initiated first UK advanced course on cell biology of Protozoa (alumni include Mike Barrett, Glasgow, Wendy Gibson, Bristol, Michael Miles, LSHTM).
1990: lead author of highly successful undergraduate text published “ The cytoskeleton & cell motility.” 202pp. + ix. Blackie & Son, Glasgow
1995: authored “cell motility” article in ‘Gray’s Anatomy, 38th Edn. Churchill Livingstone, Edinburgh.
Devised an Erasmus intensive advanced program in Protist Biology staged in Clermont-Ferrand, France that ran for 5 years 1992-1997. Coordinator of a quarter of the program dealing with cytoskeleton & motility.
Long term links with CNRS groups in France.
Examiner of PhD & higher doctorates in UK & France
Scientific societies: British Society for Protist Biology (President 2000-3), Groupement des Protistologues de Langue Française , Fellow of Linnean Society (Council member 2008 – 2011)
Research publications in fields of cell motility (chick heart fibroblasts, snail hemocytes (in respect of host defence against Schistosoma larvae), phenotypic transformation in amoeboflagellates, cytoskeleton & traction in amoeboid movements, gliding in the parasitic net slime mold, Labyrinthula, gliding motility of Apicomlexans.
Current interests: the ecology of freshwater micro-organisms especially in respect of the biophysics of motility at the water:air interface. This latter has important implications for direct or aerosol transmission of the causative organisms of keratitis (Acanthamoeba) & meningoencephalitis (Naegleria) and their bacterial hitch-hikers including Legionella. Interference microscopy.
This project has been made possible by a Wellcome Trust Arts Award.
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