Does a 3D replica of you exist? Based on a recent art exhibit completed by Heather Dewey-Hagborg, it just might. Hagborg, who resides in New York City, has created an art gallery out of samples of human DNA she found on the streets. These include items such as chewed gum or cigarette butts. The project was inspired by the presence of genetic material and availability of DNA testing.
Dewey-Hagborg uses Genspace, which is a do it yourself biology lab, to identify gene expressions. However, these gene expressions are based solely on appearance and do not account for personality. Instead, they are able to identify features such as hair and eye colour, freckles, skin tone and significant facial features.
Once these gene expressions are identified, she translates them into 3D models resembling how the person may actually appear. She then 3D prints life sized faces and displays them in her exhibit, Stranger Visions.
Although these models appear realistic, Dewey-Hagborg says they are more likely to resemble a close relative and not an exact replication. In order to help viewers determine if the face is indeed theirs, she writes the location the DNA was found next to each of the completed masks. However, one piece of information that the DNA is unable to provide is the age of the individual.
This exhibit indicates how 3D engineering is not only influencing corporate and manufacturing processes but is also having impact on subjects such as art. The influences of 3D engineering to our lives are becoming more and more evident.