Blood Culture: Reimag(in)ing Life at a Cellular Scale

Katy Connor*, Maria Fannin, Julie Kent, Ash M Toye

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review


This paper reflects on collaboration between an artist, a scientist and two social scientists involved in research on cultured red blood cells. Cell culture is part of a suite of methods used by bioscientists to study cellular processes outside of the living organism. The production of laboratory-grown blood is at the cutting-edge of cell culture and regenerative medicine, with hopes for significant therapeutic benefit in the future, particularly for patients with rare blood types or with conditions that require frequent blood transfusions. We reflect on our collaboration and on artistic experimentation with spatial dimensions of cells and scaffolds used in red blood cell culture, highlighting our efforts to generate knowledge that cuts across our respective disciplinary locations. We situate our work together in the context of the increasing molecularization of the body in science and medicine, and on the efforts to ‘open up’ scientific practice to multiple publics.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInterdisciplinary Science Reviews
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 21 Nov 2020

Structured keywords

  • Bristol BioDesign Institute


  • blood
  • tissue culture
  • synthetic biology
  • art
  • body
  • scale
  • biotechnology
  • tissue economy

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