Bacteria interact with each other at the microscopic level, communicating where and when they should search for food. In this series, strains of Paenibacillus and Salmonella, known to cause a variety of diseases such as food poisoning, typhoid fever, and bacteremia, are allowed to grow and spread on Petri dishes. The patterns emerge from an initial population of bacteria that swim outward through an Agar gel using their motorized tails, creating the equivalent to a microscopic traffic jam of bacteria.
The Petri collection is a set of porcelain dishes manufactured by Bernardaud that Vik Muniz and I collaborated on. More information about this limited edition can be found in the brochure or purchased here from Bernardaud or at the MoMA Store. A portion of the sales are donated back to research.