A striking sculpture titled “De Novo” has been created as part of an ongoing collaboration between USC Stem Cell and the USC Roski School of Art and Design.
Doctor of Pharmacy candidate Loranna Grigoryan and undergraduate biological sciences major Jonathan Lee fashioned a series of human ears attached to a 2 1/2-foot structure evoking DNA’s double helix.
The work of art references the research of USC Stem Cell scientist Neil Segil, who studies the embryonic development of the inner ear and develops future treatments for deaf people. It was produced for an advanced ceramics course taught by Karen Koblitz, USC Roski head of ceramics.
After the sculpture appeared this fall in the Helen Lindhurst Fine Arts Gallery in USC Roski’s Watt Hall, the students donated it to Segil and the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at USC.
“I really love the sculpture,” Segil said. “It’s not often that someone takes time to try and understand the arcane nature of a biologist’s work and turns it into art. I think they did a great job, and I thank this art and science collaboration for giving the students an opportunity to interact with people in a working laboratory.”