Interior Forms: A Comparison of Sculpture with the Cell Cytoskeleton

Both science and art are products of the intellectual life of a the same society and may answer from different questions vantage points. An example of parallel work in science and art is Penman’s studies in biology and physics and Nettleship’s sculpture. Penman studies subcellular structure, which organizes the biochemical events within cells. Nettleship makes sculpture in which he examines form development and relationships between interior and surface. The main points of comparison in their work are (1) the visual similarity between the observed cell structure and the forms of Nettleship’s sculpture, (2) the study of surfaces that are integral parts of interiors and (3) a conviction that organizing principles exist that govern the construction of interior cellular structures and sculptural form. Together their work suggests a reassertion of the central place of form in diverse disciplines.

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