Science to Art

Science to Art benefits STEAM education in Kansas City.

Science to Art is a platform for regional scientists to display and describe their research through the visual arts. Each of these remarkable images tells a personal research story and poetically captures the fieldwork performed by the scientists and their teams. These images were submitted by scientists from Columbia, Missouri, to Manhattan, Kansas. All proceeds from the Science to Art auction will be donated to STEAM education in KC.

The application for 2020 submissions has been extended until May 22, 2020.


Artwork auctioned during 2019 is showcased below.

SOLD FOR: $355
Auxin Motherboard

Janlo Robil, University of Missouri

16 x 12 inches printed

Auxin is a master regulator of plant development. This image reimagines the plant hormone auxin molecule as the core processor of an electronic system that controls biological functions in corn (top), rice (right corner) and the dicot model plant, Arabidopsis (left corner), at various developmental stages (seed, seedling and mature plant).

The artwork signifies how a simple molecule can affect a multitude of developmental processes in plants which is very important in the improvement of food crops, such as corn and rice.

SOLD FOR: $300
Cellular Kokopelli

Dalton Dacus, Kansas State University

12 x 12 inches printed

This image shows human skins cells that express proteins from human papillomavirus (HPV). Typically, cells have only one nucleus (magenta). HPV promotes cancer by increasing the chance that cells will have multiple nuclei. The structural protein, tubulin, is shown in cyan.

SOLD FOR: $250
City Lights

Claudia Morello, Kansas State University

12 x 18 inches mounted

This image shows spectral data of the star 78 Virginis (in the constellation Virgo) from a high resolution Echelle spectrograph as observed by a one-meter telescope. The curved lines represent wavelength bands, as an Echelle spectrograph characteristically wraps the bands around in order to increase spectroscopic resolution. The bright spots represent elements that are uncommon in stars, as 78 Virginis is highly metallic. It has a high concentration of silicon, chromium, and strontium in its outer layers which make for beautiful spectral lines reminiscent of city lights. This image was created from ten hours of observations averaged together and used to determine the period of this rapidly oscillating star.

SOLD FOR: $400
Electric Canyon

Stefan Bossmann, Kansas State University

12 x 16 inches mounted

This is an electro-etched microfluidic channel capable of mechanically reprogramming cancer cells. Mechanobiology is becoming increasingly important to find new ways to treat cancer. Mechanical stretching permits the activation of genes that allow the cancer cell to undergo programmed cell death. This approach is accompanied by studies of the cancer metabolism, which offers opportunities to change the gene expression pattern of cancer, making it less aggressive.

SOLD FOR: $500
Fertile Ground

Yujun Chen, Kansas State University

12 x 12 inches printed

The fruit fly is widely used for biological research. This image shows the egg chambers from the ovary of an adult female fruit fly. All cells are stained for f-actin (yellow) and nuclei (cyan). Border cells (magenta) shown here are important for sperm entry.

SOLD FOR: $375
Frayed Fish

Rene Martin, University of Kansas

12 x 20 inches printed

This is an image of a Micro-computed tomography (Micro-CT) scan of a deep-sea rattail fish. This particular image was taken for research on bone density variation. Rattails are found in most of the Earth’s oceans and are known to span a wide range of habitat depths, from 100 – 7,000 m. Brighter areas on the image correlate to higher bone density.

SOLD FOR: $500
Indigo Flower

Emily Pascoe, Kansas State University

12 x 15.5 inches printed

This is an image of an indigo flower showing that the correct Ph level has been reached because enough heat has been applied to the mixture. When this flower, the bubbling foaming surface with copper color streaks, rises to the top of the vessel it indicates that the chemical reaction between the powdered indigo, fructose crystals, and calcium hydroxide is working. It is a sign for a natural dye practitioner that their work will be successful.

SOLD FOR: $370
Insulin Relief

Simon Friedman, University of Missouri Kansas City

12 x 12 inches bas-relief

This is a wood bas-relief  engraving of the insulin hexamer.  Insulin is a critical signaling molecule present in the healthy pancreas.  It is released as a signal to the body that sugar is present in the blood and should be absorbed.  Type 1 diabetics however can’t produce insulin, leading to high blood sugars and a host of health problems.  Our work focuses on engineering insulin to improve its properties.  One main focus is controlling insulin release with light, to allow diabetics to vary insulin delivery without the need for an insulin pump. You can see the spring like alpha helicies that make up the individual insulins, as well as the more extended beta sheet structures.  Finally, there is the three fold axis that relates the three dimers that make the hexamer.

SOLD FOR: $710
Invisible Growth

Carl Gelhaus, MRIGlobal, Katie Swann, Shawnee Mission South High School

12 x 16 inches mounted

Invisible bacteria are everywhere and affect the quality of products, our food, and our health. This is an image of a bacteria grown on door handles in low- and high-traffic areas in a public high school, Shawnee Mission South High School.

A local high school student, Katie Swann, collected, grew, and analyzed the samples. While the subjects are inherently interesting as bacteria, they also represent what STEAM in Kansas City is about: growing interest in science and technology among the region’s young students.

SOLD FOR: $500
Leafy Caterpillar

Seton Bachle, Kansas State University

10 x 46 inches mounted

This is a Big Bluestem leaf from Konza Prairie. This grass, along with the surrounding ecosystem, has been shaped and maintained by 3 main drivers: climate, grazing, and fire. A confocal microscope and various biological stains were used to indicate specific anatomical structures of this dominant grassland species.

SOLD FOR: $400
Lunar Lucunae

Kamani Lankachandra, Truman Medical Centers

12 x 16 inches printed

This image is a photomicrograph of bone from the top part of the human back bone called cervical spine. It identifies possible amyloid deposits (an abnormal protein that is produced in your bone marrow).

SOLD FOR: $320
Malignant Transformation

Dalton Dacus, Kansas State University

12 x 12 inches printed

This image shows human skin cells that express proteins from human papillomavirus (HPV). Typically, cells have only one nucleus (green). HPV promotes cancer by increasing the chance that cells will have multiple nuclei. The structural protein, tubulin, is shown in purple.

SOLD FOR: $1,100
Neon Avocado

Diana Acevedo, University of Kansas Medical Center

12 x 16 inches printed

This image shows the study of breast cancer. Human breast cancer cells were injected into a mouse model and the staining was used to identify which molecules are important for metastasis/invasion/progression.

SOLD FOR: $400
Penetrating the Heart of Darkness

Margaret Brommelsiek, University of Missouri Kansas City

12 x 15 3/4 inches printed

This image is an archival print of a hand pieced and stitched collage depicting a visual exploration of the complex journey of conducting research as an outsider/artist in an operating room during live surgery and how to negotiate the sights, smells, sounds and emotions collected in the artist’s memory.

SOLD FOR: $520
Petal to the Metal

McKenzie Summerfield, MRIGlobal

12 x 16 inches mounted

This is a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) image of a coral drift rose petal that was sputter coated with gold taken at 1.27K magnification. A SEM works by shooting electrons at a sample in a high vacuum and then detecting emitted electrons to see the topography of the sample. However, for a sample to be able to be seen by a SEM, it must be a conductive surface otherwise no electrons will emit from the sample to be detected.

This image was taken to showcase the new capabilities that MRIGlobal has since purchasing the SEM. In addition to imaging samples, this SEM is equipped with an EDS detector that allows for elemental analysis of the sample.

SOLD FOR: $300
Tarsal Parcel

Joshua Breaux, Children's Mercy

12 x 12 inches printed

This is an image of cartilage mapping of a wrist. This MRI technique is used to better evaluate joint pathology in conjunction with standard imaging. Originally research to evaluate the amount of cartilage related to the results was conducted leading to a standard of non-contrast imaging for cartilage evaluation for many patients.

SOLD FOR: $1,000
The Happy Brain

Plamen Doynov, University of Missouri Kansas City

12 x 12 inches printed

This is an image of a human brain based on Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) – an advanced MRI technique that has become valuable in a variety of clinical scenarios. For example, to diagnose the presence of traumatic brain injury, treatment for vascular lesions located in the deep brain structures, and to localize ideal placement for deep brain stimulation.

DTI can be used for localization and presurgical planning, surgeon training using virtual reality and to preprogram and navigate surgical robots. A simple software update allows any standard MRI machine to generate DTI images and makes DTI available in more hospitals and clinics.

SOLD FOR: $250
Where’s Waldo? – Bio Style

Robert White, Kansas City University

12 x 12 inches printed

This is a tile of x-rays taken of the skeleton of mice focusing on the spine. The tiles include one image of a mouse with a severe muscle degeneration disease which is a model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) in humans and has an impressive abnormal spinal curvature. The remaining tiles are of DMD mice which show the normal curvature of the spine by expressing human eye dystrophin in a genetically manipulated mouse replace the missing skeletal muscle protein in order to partially rescue their disease.