SCIENCE ART FILM FESTIVAL The International Synthetic Biology Festival took place
between 23rd -25th of October 2014 in Vienna, Austria.
In 2015 the festival is on a tour around the world.




The second BIO·FICTION Science Art Film Festival took place from 23 - 25 October, 2014. The event was held at the Museum of Natural History in Vienna, Austria.

BIO·FICTION explored the emerging field of synthetic biology from different disciplinary angles including science and engineering, social science, cultural studies, amateur biology, film makers, artists and designers. We had presentations, panel discussions, do-it-yourself biology demos, performances, art work and of course film screenings. It featured short films on any aspect of synthetic biology, including documentary films, animation, (science) fiction etc.

The first festival was held in Vienna, Austria, in 2011, when it received 130 short films from 26 countries, of which a jury selected 52 films, and awarding 5 films with major awards.

To read our Festival Report please click below:


To view images from the festival please click on the image below:


BIO·FICTION 2014 was produced by Vienna based



BIO·FICTION embraced a vibrant encounter of scientists, social scientists, film makers, artists, game developers and the DIYBio community. See which talks, screenings and performances took place during the BIO·FICTION Festival below: Thursday, 23 October 2014  
When Where What
12:00 to 13:30
Reception & Lunch Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24
13:00 to 13:30
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film screening: Synthetic Biology in Europe (30 min)
13:30 to 13:45
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50
Markus SCHMIDT(Biofaction)
13:45 to 15:15
Homo faber: engineering life Moderator: Lei PEI (Biofaction)
  Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50Christopher COENEN (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology - ITAS, Germany) favicon-2 SYNENERGENE - the European synthetic biology RRI initiative
  Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50Vitor MARTINS DOS SANTOS (Laboratory of Systems and Synthetic Biology - Wageningen University, Netherlands) favicon-2 Synthetic biology - programming living matter
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50Nediljko BUDISA (TU Berlin - Dep. Chemistry, Germany) favicon-2 Expanded genetic code as a route to change the basic chemistry of life
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50Uwe SLEYTR (University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Department for Nanobiotechnology, Austria) favicon-2 A Technology based on living parts
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Philippe MARLIERE (Isthmus, France) favicon-2 Charting the xenobiotic continent
15:15 to 15:45
Coffee break Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24 & Interaction
15:45 to 17:00
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film screening: BioArt, Art from the lab (55 min.)favicon-2 Discussion with film maker Robert STYBLO
17:00 to 18:30
Homo aestheticus: life as medium for artistic expression Moderator: Günter SEYFRIED
  Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Jens HAUSER (Univ. of Copenhagen, Department of Arts and Cultural Studies & Medical Museion, Denmark) favicon-2 ‘The new Green’? Art between Synthetic Biology and Biohacking
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Richard PELL (The Center for PostNatural History, USA) favicon-2 That was then… This is now: recent developments in PostNatural history
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Herwig WEISER (Independent Artist, Austria) favicon-2 Phantom Lucid Messenger
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Erich BERGER (Finish Bioart Society, Finnland) favicon-2 HYBRID MATTERs
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Anna DUMITRIU (Independent artist, Institute of Unnecessary Research, UK) favicon-2 Trust Me, I’m an Artist - Towards an Ethics of Art and Science Collaboration
19:45 to 21:00
Performance HARE'S BLOOD+ (1st group, 45 people max.)Klaus SPIESS (Medical University Vienna, Austria) and Lucie STRECKER (Performance Artist and Scenographer, Germany)
21:15 to 22:30
Performance HARE'S BLOOD+ (2nd group, 45 people max.)Klaus SPIESS (Medical University Vienna, Austria) and Lucie STRECKER (Performance Artist and Scenographer, Germany)
20:00 to 21:00
Bellaria Cinema
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film Screening: FICTION VISION
21:15 to 22:30
Bellaria Cinema
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film Screening: FICTION DESIGN
  Friday, 24 October 2014  
When Where What
09:00 to 10:30
Homo societatis: responsible research and innovation (RRI)
Moderator: Christopher COENEN
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Sheref MANSY (Univ. of Trento, CIBIO, Italy) favicon-2 Integrating artificial with natural cells
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Virgil RERIMASSIE (Rathenau Institute, Netherlands) favicon-2 SynBio Politics: bringing a synthetic biology into debate in the Netherlands
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Erwin RICHTER (Österreichisches Bundesheer – ABC Abwehrschule, Austria) favicon-2 Bioweapons and Biosecurity
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Karen KASTENHOFER (Austrian Academy of Science – Institue of Technology Assessment, Austria) favicon-2 The Power of Framing in Technology Governance
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Jordi MAISO (Inst. of Philosophy - Center for Human and Social Sciences - CSIC, Spain) favicon-2 Addressing the Ethical Issues of Synthetic Biology
10:30 to 11:00
Coffee break Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24 & Interaction
11:00 to 12:30
Homo communis: do-it-yourself biology
Moderator: Jens HAUSER
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Ilya LEVANTIS (London Biohackspace) favicon-2 London Biohackspace: Growing cellulose, growing potential
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Philipp BOEING (University College London/Darwin Toolbox, UK) favicon-2 bento·lab
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Thomas LANDRAIN
(La Paillasse, France) favicon-2 Is biohacking the future of biology?
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Pieter van BOHEEMEN
(Waag Society/Amplino, Netherlands) favicon-2 From tinkering to trading: Amplino's frugal health care innovation
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 G
ünter SEYFRIED, Lucas CZJZEK, Niki PASSATH (Pavillon 35, Austria) favicon-2 Yeastogramsfavicon-2 Opening of DIYbio Demo Tables
12:30 to 13:30
Lunch Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24 + DIYbio Demos
13:30 to 14:30
Homo oeconomicus: innovation as rational behaviour?
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Vincenzo PAVONE (Institute of Public Goods and Policies, CSIC, Spain) favicon-2 Synthetic life, neoliberal society: biopolitics in the XXI century
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Nadine BONGAERTS (Hello Tomorrow/Kairos Foundation, Netherlands) favicon-2 Hello Tomorrow: a European technology & entrepreneurship competition favicon-2 Panel discussion with Vincenzo Pavone, Nadine Bongaerts, Lucie Strecker and Klaus Spiess
14:30 to 15:30
Homo patiens: the antibiotic resistance threat
Moderator: Wolfgang KERBE (Biofaction)
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Sven PANKE (Bioprocess Laboratory D-BSSE - ETH Zuerich) favicon-2 A combinatorial approach to design novel antibiotics
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Anna DUMITRIU (Independent artist, Institute of Unnecessary Research, UK) favicon-2 The MRSA Quilt
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Rüdiger TROJOK (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology - ITAS, Germany) favicon-2 BioStrike - Open Antibiotics Discovery favicon-2 Panel discussion with Sven Panke, Anna Dumitru, Rüdiger Trojok
15:30 to 16:00
Coffee break Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24 & Interaction
16:00 to 18:15
Homo culturalis: science in film
Moderator: Laurens LANDEWEERD
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 David KIRBY (Univ. of Manchester, Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine, UK) favicon-2 Science on the Silver Screen: Scientists' Impact on Cinema, Cinema's Influence on Science
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Katherina T. ZAKRAVSKY (Independent scholar of science and society, writer, performance and concept artist, developer, Austria) favicon-2 Dark Star Dystopia - From the Sad Tropes of Technology in Seventies Science Fiction Cinema to the Dawn of Decomponautics favicon-2 Panel discussion with David KIRBY, Katharina T. ZAKRAVSKY, Kristina KORSHOLM (Actress and filmmaker) and Steen RASMUSSEN (University of Southern Denmark - Fundamental Living Technology FLinT, Denmark)
20:00 to 21:30
Bellaria Cinema
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film Screening: FICTION NARRATIVE
21:45 to 22:30
Bellaria Cinema
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film Screening: ANIMATION
  Saturday, 25 October 2014  
When Where What
09:00 to 12:30
Bellaria Cinema
Open Cinema Breakfast Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24
09:00 to 09:55
Bellaria Cinema
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film Screening: DOCUMENTARY I
10:00 to 11:00
Bellaria Cinema
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film Screening: DOCUMENTARY II
11:30 to 13:00
Bellaria Cinema
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.39.42 Film Screening: DOCUMENTARY III
11:00 to 13:00
NHM Café
Hello Tomorrow Workshop
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 with Nadine BONGAERTS
13:00 to 14:00
Artist's Work in Progress: Presentation of Prototype
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 with Herwig Weiser
13:30 to 14:30
Lunch Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24
14:30 to 15:45
Homo ludens: playing with life, seriously
Moderator: Olga RADCHUK
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Asi BURAK (Games for Change, USA): Games for Change favicon-2 With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Mario HERGER (Enterprise Gamification, USA) favicon-2 Gamification in Science favicon-2 Discussion with Asi Burak, Mario Herger, Uwe Sleytr and Virgil Rerimassie (iGEM)
15:45 to 16:15
Coffee break Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24 & Interaction
16:15 to 18:00
Homo reciprocans: bio-commons and intellectual property
Moderator: Erich BERGER
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Philipp PFINGSTAA (TU Munich – School of Management – Technology and Innovation Management, Germany) favicon-2 The changing nature of intellectual property rights in synthetic biology
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Thomas MARGONI (Faculty of Law - University of Amsterdam, Netherlands) favicon-2 Intellectual property, licenses and science
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Laurens LANDEWEERD (TUDelft/Bioart Laboratories, Netherlands) favicon-2 Who owns nature? issues of social exclusion in the instrumentalisation of life
Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.43.50 Rüdiger TROJOK (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology - ITAS, Germany) favicon-2 The bio-commons whitepaper favicon-2 Panel discussion with Philipp Pfingstag, Thomas Margoni, Laurens Landwerd, Rüdiger Trojok
18:00 to 19:30
19:30 to 20:00
Admission to Gala event and Dinner Buffet Bildschirmfoto 2014-10-07 um 11.41.24 (200 people max.)
20:00 to 22:00
GALA Event: BIO·FICTION Short Film Awards (Registration required 250 max)
Moderator: Thomas EDLINGER (FM4)Address of Welcome by NHM Director Christian KöberlAddress of Welcome by BIO·FICTION Organizers Markus Schmidt and Camillo MeinhartInterview with Jury MembersAward for Best Animation Short FilmAward for Best Fiction Short FilmAward for Best Documentary Short FilmAward Special Prize of the Jury Closing
22:00 to ? After-party


The BIO·FICTION short film competition with 100 submitted films from 17 countries was one of the highlights of the festival. After watching all entries our expert jury decided on these winning films:



"Copy & Clone". Louis Rigaud / FR, 2010 / 03:15

COPY&CLONE from bio-fiction on Vimeo.


BIO·FICTION award FICTION (2.000 €)

"Hybris". Arjan Brentjes / NL, 2014 / 06:22

Hybris from bio-fiction on Vimeo.



"New Mumbai". Tobias Revell / UK, 2012 / 09:17

New Mumbai from bio-fiction on Vimeo.


The BIO·FICTION Special Award of the Jury (500 €)

"Vermin". Adi Gelbart / DE, 2011 / 23:09

Vermin - Trailer from gelbart on Vimeo.

We want to thank all film makers for their exciting submissions! The films have been judged by the BIO·FICTION Film Jury consisting of:

  • Erich Berger (Curator and artist, Finnland)
  • Sebastian Harrer (Film director and festival organizer, Germany)
  • Jens Hauser (Curator and researcher, Denmark)
  • David Kirby (Researcher and book author, UK) 
  • Philippe Marliere (Bio-entrepreneur, France)
  • Vitor Martins dos Santos (Researcher and film aficionado, Netherlands)
  • Robert Styblo (Film producer and director, Austria)
  • Huib de Vriend (Social scientist and film aficionado, Netherlands)
  • Katherina T. Zakravsky (Independent scholar of science and society, writer, performance and concept artist, developer, Austria)
The following films were shortlisted for BIO·FICTION 2014:
01_Bioart_web 02-Electrostabilis-Cardium_p01_web 03_SynBio-Ads-London_p03_web
BioArt, Art from the laboratory   Electrostabilis Cardium Synbio Ads London
Robert W. K. Styblo / UK, 2011 / 55:00  Agi Haines / UK, 2013 / 03:27 Benedikt Groß / DE, 2012 / 01:36
04_SynBio-Ads-Mintel_p01_web 05_Culturists_p03_web 06_The-Outline-of-Paradise_p04_web
 Synbio Ads Mintel  The Culturists  The Outline of Paradise
 Benedikt Groß / DE, 2012 / 01:20  David Benqué / UK,2014 / 02:09  Ursula Damm / DE, 2012 / 04:06
48_Black Gold_p01 08-Quanticare_p02_web 09_Aflatoxin-biosensor-p02_web
 Black Gold Quanticare  Aflatoxin Biosensor
 Tim Clark & Frank Kolkman / UK, 2014 / 03:49  Amy Congdon, Jenny Lee, Ann-Kristin Abel / UK, 2012 / 02:23  Ari Dwijayanti & Dimas Dwi Adiguna / INO, 2013 / 03:09
10_Exploring-Indonesia_p04_web 11_Consultation_p04_web 12_System-Synthetics_p03_web
 Exploring Indonesia  Consultation System Synthetics
 Ari Dwijayanti / INO, 2013 / 02:50  Ping Lu / DE, 2013 / 03:50  Maurizio Montalti / NL, 2011 / 05:55
13-Bacteria-to-the-Future_p02_web 14_Bacteria-Compass_p02_web 15_Travelling-Research-Kit_p02_web
 Bacteria to the Future  Bacteria Compass  Travelling Research Kit
 Sam Ireland / UK, 2014 / 03:59  Howard Boland, C-LAB / UK, 2012 / 02:08  The Extrapolation Factory / US, 2014 / 05:40
16_Protocell-Technology_p04_web 17_Preparing-for-Tomorrow_p02_web 18_I-Wanna-Deliver-a-Dolphin_p01_web
 Protocell Technology  Preparing for Tomorrow  I Wanna Deliver a Dolphin
 Shamees Aden & Sam J Bond / UK, 2012 / 01:49  Nathan Burr / UK, 2014 / 06:29  Ai Hasegawa / JP, 2013 / 02:35
19-bioflaneur-p01_web 20-Living-Food_p01_web 21-Streichhoelzer_p01_web
 Bio Flaneur  Living Food  Streichhölzer
 Aleks Cicha / UK, 2014 / 02:20  Minsu Kim / UK, 2013 / 00:55 David Hochgatterer / AT, 2011 / 01:44
22-Alien-Fanfare_p02_web 23-bioplastic-fantastic_p03_web 24-uncolour-me-curious-p02_web
 Alien Fanfare  Bioplastic Fantastic  Uncolour Me Courious
 Jonathan Monaghan / US, 2014 / 12:50  Johanna Schmeer / UK, 2014 / 03:51  Georgia Bondy / UK, 2014 / 03:07
25-A-new-way-in-evolution_p01_web 26_Expanded-Self_p01_web 27-chlorotherapy-p02_web
 A new way in Evolution  Expanded Self  Chlorotherapy
 Uwe Sleytr / AT, 2014 / 03:41  Sonja Bäumel / AT, 2012 / 03:28  Marie-Sarah Adenis & Hugo Kreit /FR, 2014 / 03:58
28_decapoda-shock_p02_web 29_I-wish-my-life_p03_web 30-Eugene_p02_web
 Decapoda Shock  I wish my life  Eugene
 Javier Chillon / ES, 2011 / 09:11  Joachim Huveneers / BE, 2014 / 15:05  Catalina Hoyos-Restrepo / US, 2014 / 16:05
31_vermin_p01_web  32_Talking-Life_p03_web 33_Hybris_p04_web
 Vermin  Talking Life  Hybris
 Adi Gelbart / DE, 2011 / 23:09  Bâr Tyrmi & Rafael Linares / ES, 2012 / 10:21  Arjan Brentjes / NL, 2014 / 06:22
34-arsehole-gene_p01_web 35_Macrostructure_p04_web 36_Bioluminescent_Streetlamps_p03_web
 The Arsehole Gene  Macrostructure   Bioluminiscent Streetlamps
 Eric Romero / UK, 2013 / 06:48  Eric Schockmel / UK, 2013 / 04:58  Steven van Eekelen / NL, 2013 / 02:22
37_Reinventing-the-Dodo_p02_web 38_COPY_AND_CLONE_p02_web 39_Beastliness_still_large_web
 Reinventing the Dodo  Copy & Clone  Beastliness
 Steven van Eekelen / NL, 2013 / 03:08  Louis Rigaud / FR, 2010 / 03:15  Deborah Kelly / AU, 2011 / 04:30
40_Cytoplasmic-Playgrounds_p01_web 41_Pet-Genesis_p03_web 42_BIO-LOGIC_p01_web
 Cytoplasmic Playgrounds  Pet Genesis  Bio-Logic
 Markos Kay / UK, 2013 / 01:10  Ingrid Hulskamp, Pras Gunasekera, Ting Lin, Amy Chin / UK, 2011 / 02:35  Maurizio Montalti / NL, 2014 / 05:44
43_katERed_p01_web 44_Proteo_p03_web 45-life-spectrum_p01_web
 KATERED  Proteo  Life Spectrum
 Howard Boland, C-LAB / UK, 2011 / 00:55  Johanna Hoffmann-Dietrich / DE, 2013 / 07:10  Paloma Dawkins / CA, 2014 / 01:00
46-quasi-objects-p01_web 47-tracked-by-our-genes_p02_web 48-The-Perfect-Humus_p02_web
 Quasi-Objects / Cinematic Environment #8  Tracked Down by Our Genes  The Perfect Humus
 Lorenzo Oggiano / IT, 2012 / 04:32  Gilbert Charles & Philippe Borrel / FR, 2007 / 54:22  Marcello Mercado / DE, 2010 / 16:26
49-Stress-o-stat_p02_web 50_simply_complex_p02_web 51-east_end_journey_p04_web
Stress-O-Stat  Simply Complex  East End Journey
 Howard Boland, C-LAB / UK, 2011 / 03:22  Duguid Cameron / UK, 2013 / 09:34  Lindsay Goodall / UK, 2013 / 09:17
52-inorganica_p02_web 53_New+Mumbai_p03_web 54_Zero-Park_p02_web
 Inorganica  New Mumbai  Zero Park
 Valerie Mellon / UK, 2013 / 15:48  Tobias Revell / UK, 2012 / 09:17  Sascha Pohflepp / DE, 2013 / 11:22
55_Public-Misunderstanding-of-Science_p02_web 56_Daughter-Cell_p04_web 57_DIYsect-p02_web
 Public Misunderstanding of Science  Daughter Cell  DIYSECT: Learning in Public
 Bruce Gilchrist / UK, 2011 / 06:20  Kristina Korsholm / US, 2014 / 04:33  Mary Tsang & Benjamin Welmond / US, 2013 / 15:32
58-Soluble_Structures-p02_web 59_History-of-the-Automobile-p01_web 60_Puppet_Earth-p03_web
 Soluble Structures  History of the Automobile  Puppet Earth
 Yuki Yoshioka / JP, 2014 / 14:32  Scott Dorsey / US, 2011 / 05:02  Laurens Roorda & Thijs Molenaar / NL, 2012 / 07:28


Hasenblut+Hasenblut+ (Hare’s Blood+) by Klaus Spiess and Lucie Strecker

This performance took place at "Narrenturm" on October 23rd 2014.

Previously, artists have often incorporated dead animals in their art-work in order to provoke an ethical, biopolitical and interspecies discourse. In contrast, in processing information on its commercial and genetic significance “Hare’s Blood+” in itself produces liveness. Klaus Spiess and Lucie Strecker transfer part of the genome from Joseph Beuy’s multiple “Hare’s Blood” into living cells. With a biosensor these transgenic cells now recognize the auction values of Beuys’ multiple “Hare’s Blood” as well as the trading values for livestock on the stock exchange. A biobrick, specifically designed from the hare’s genome, stops cell growth if the relation between auction values and livestock trades on the stock exchange conflicts with Joseph Beuys’ idea of free-trade. The artists consider concepts of ‚living money’ when the artwork is consigned to its “collectors” in a performative auction. This performative artwork with its different thresholds of liveness rejects definite property rights over a “biobanked” animal in art and suggests a living and autopoetically learning ontological substance.

Co-choreography: Costas Kekis. Performers: Costas Kekis, Raphael Michon, IvandroPedroni. Programming and Visual Media: Norbert Unfug, Antony Raijekov. Molecular Biology: Markus Hofer, Reinhard Nestelbacher, Lore Breitenbach-Koller, Karl Kuchler (Video), Camillo Meinhart (Video).

Klaus Spiess specializes in endocrinology, medical anthropology, psychoanalysis and medical performance. He works as an associate professor at Vienna Medical University (Arts in Medicine Group, Center for Public Health) and has recently been cooperating with Lucie Strecker in the collective “Bios:Zoe”. Works by both of them have been presented at the Tate Modern, the Kunstforum International, Haus der Kulturen der Welt Berlin, Tanzquartier Vienna, Budascoop Kortrijk, published by Kunstforum International, Performance Research, Diaphanes Publisher and have received awards from the Austrian Science Fund and Performing Science Gießen.
Lucie Strecker is an artist, performer and fellow at the University of the Arts, Berlin. She has recently been cooperating with Klaus Spiess in the collective “Bios:Zoe”). Works by both of them have been presented at the Tate Modern, the Kunstforum International, Haus der Kulturen der Welt Berlin, Tanzquartier Vienna, Budascoop Kortrijk, published by Kunstforum International, Performance Research, Diaphanes Publisher and have received awards from the Austrian Science Fund and Performing Science Gießen. LPM

Lucid Phantom Messenger (work in progress) by Herwig Weiser

This performance took place at NHM Room VI from Oct. 23rd - 25th 2014, with special presentation with the artist on Oct.25th, from 13:00 - 14:00

Lucid Phantom Messenger brings together recycled substances derived from computer hardware trash, which mix and change in a live life-like process not unlike a crystal garden. Lucid Phantom Messenger represents a thoughtful link between Stéphane Leduc’s attempt to understand and build life from basic physical and chemical principles, and current endeavours to subjugate complex biological systems to engineering rules. The artwork juxtaposes the rational teleological engineering approach with the unpredictable evolutionary processes in biology. The strict architectonic layout of the electric control panel (with electrodes and pumps) contrast with the chaotic fluidic forms it helps creating. Lucid Phantom Messenger reminds us in an aesthetic play that the deployment of a highly rational system does allow the emergence of unpredictable and sometimes hypnotic patterns.

Biography: In his films and many other works Herwig Weiser undermines rational filters, interrogates modes of thinking and common meanings in our relation to technology. Instead of documenting reality, the works seek to trigger uncontrolled stream of consciousness, unanticipated reactions, uncertain consequences, in which, in the artist’s words, “media got drugged.” He studied at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie Amsterdam (1992-94) and graduated from the Academy of Media Arts Cologne in 1998. Weiser focuses on the analogue materiality of the digital machinery that he is reworking and rethinking in his projects. Thus, for example, Weiser transforms a computer into a living organism - ‘functioning’ or evolving as an unpredictable and unstable system - logic in reverse. His projects are the result of close collaborations with both scientists and musicians, always aiming to provoke powerful sensual experiences while simultaneously evoking the strong correspondence between art and science or film and performance.

PostNatural2Center for PostNatural History by Richard Pell

This event took place at NHM from Oct. 23rd - 25th 2014

The Center for PostNatural History (CPNH) is dedicated to the collection, documentation and exhibition of living organisms that have been intentionally and heritably altered by human beings through processes such as domestication, selective breeding and genetic engineering. The CPNH operates a permanent museum in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania as well as touring exhibitions in the United States and Europe. The CPNH has been awarded support from Creative Capital, The Kindle Project, The Waag Society, The Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship and The Rockefeller ReNew Media Fellowship.  


Grown your ink

Grown your ink

Thomas LANDRAIN, Marie-Sarah ADENIS

La Paillasse, France



Philipp BOEING





London Biohackspace, UK



Pieter van BOHEEMEN

Waag Society/Amplino, Netherlands




Pavillon 35, Austria


Synthetic biology

About Synthetic Biology

Synthetic Biology in Europe
from Biofaction on Vimeo.

Synthetic biology is a new area of biological research that combines science and engineering. Synthetic biology emcompasses a variety of different approaches, methodologies and disciplines, with the aim to design and construct new biological functions and systems not found in nature. Synthetic biology is based on genetic engineering but goes much further. It aims at creating whole new biological functions, systems and eventually organisms.

1. Engineering DNA-based biological circuits, including standard biological parts: Instead of just transfering one gene, a whole system is built in an organisms (e.g. an oscillator, an on-off switch, a more complicated multi-step chemical synthesis of a useful biomolecule, biocomputer). New regulatory circuits are produced by inserting well-characterised, modular, artificial networks to provide new functions in cells and organisms. The aim is to attain new levels of complexity in the modification of biosynthetic pathways for sustainable chemistry.

2. Defining a minimal genome: Taking a bacteria that already has a very small genome (i.e. number of base pairs) and reduce it even further until the organisms cannot survive any longer. That way we can define and understand the smallest possible genome that still sustains life. This minimal life will also forma  „chassis“ for hosting the biocircuits described above.

3. Constructing synthetic cells or protocells from scratch or bottom-up: In an attempt to prove Pasteur’s “law of biogenesis” (Omne vivum ex vivo, Latin for, “all life [is] from life”) incomplete, scientists are now trying to produce synthetic cellular life form from simple chemical ingredients.

4. Xenobiology - designing orthogonal biochemistries not found in nature: All forms of life on earth use the famous DNA molecule. Now scientists are constructing different molecules with similar functions (e.g. the XNA, Xeno nucleic acid) to construct living systems that have never existed before, as a way to avoid interference with naturally evolved DNA while doing biotechnology. Similarly new base pairs are tested, non-standard amino acids are used and the genetic code itself is redesigned.

5. The chemical synthesis of DNA: So far DNA could only be created by life itself, but now special DNA synthesis machines can actually “print” DNA the way we want it. Scientist can e.g. download the genetic code of a virus or a bacteria and print its DNA in the lab.

By applying the toolbox of engineering disciplines to biology, a whole set of potential applications become possible. Some of the potential benefits of synthetic biology, such as the development of low-cost drugs or the production of chemicals and energy by engineered bacteria are enormous. There are, however, also potential and perceived risks due to deliberate or accidental damage, as well as ethical questions.

On Tour

Want to host a BIO·FICTION event?

The original BIO·FICTION Film Festival took place in Vienna from 23-25th October, 2014. After the original festival, we are sending the festival on tour to other places around the world, see dates below and check back for updates and further cities added over time!  

1) BIO·FICTION Linz, Austria: 15/16th November 2014 at the Ars Electronica Center More infos about the Linz event HERE and HERE  

2) BIO·FICTION Waldkraiburg, Deutschland: 28th November 2014 More infos about the Waldkraiburg event HERE and HERE  

3) BIO·FICTION Ljubljana, Slovenia: 29th January 2015 More infos about the Ljubljana event HERE  

4) BIO·FICTION Berlin, Germany: 24/25 January 2015 More infos about the Berlin event HERE and HERE  

5) BIO·FICTION Kiev, Ukraine: 2/3rd April 2015 More infos about the Kiev event HERE  

6) BIO·FICTION नई दिल्ली (New Delhi), India: 9 or 10th April 2015 As part of The Undivided Mind at Khoj  

7) BIO·FICTION Taipei 1, Taiwan: 25 April 2015. More infos about the Taiwan events HERE at HuaShan1914 Creative Park  

8) BIO·FICTION Seattle, USA: 7th May 2015 More infos about the Seattle event HERE!  

9) BIO·FICTION Helsinki, Finland: 22nd May 2015 More infos about the Helsinki event HERE!  

10) BIO·FICTION Stuttgart, Germany: 3-7th June 2015. As part of the event "Wir schaffen das Leben aus den Labors der synthetischen Biologie” at the German Evangelical Church Assembly (Deutscher Evangelischer Kirchentag) 2015. More infos HERE  

11) BIO·FICTION Karlsruhe, Germany: 1st July 2015 More infos about the Karlsruhe event HERE  

12) BIO·FICTION Taipei 2, Taiwan: 14th June 2015. More infos about the Taiwan events HERE at National Taiwan Science Education Museum alongside the Bio-Art exhibition 'Imaginary Body Boundary' at the Digital Art Center.  

13) BIO·FICTION Taipei 3, Taiwan: 15/16th August 2015. More infos about the Taiwan events HERE at Songshan Cultural and Creative Park alongside the Science Festival launched by PanSci.  

14) BIO·FICTION Yogyakarta 1 , Indonesia: 11th September 2015. More infos about the Yogyakarta event HERE.  

15) BIO·FICTION Yogyakarta 2 , Indonesia: end of September 2015. More infos about the Yogyakarta event HERE.  

16) BIO·FICTION Perth, Australia: 4th October 2015, as part of the Neolife SLSA conference. Taking place in the Webb Lecture Theater at the University of Western Australia (UWA) from 2-4pm.  

17) BIO·FICTION Ubatuba, Brazil: 22nd-23rd Oct 2015. More infos about the Ubatuba event HERE.  

18) BIO·FICTION Poznan, Poland: 29th Oct 2015, at Collegium Biologicum, Adam Mickiewicz University UAM, Poznan. More infos HERE.  

19) BIO·FICTION Nijmegen, Netherlands: 4-8th Nov 2015. More infos about the Nijmegen event HERE  

20) BIO·FICTION Dublin, Ireland: 14th Nov 2015. More infos about the Dublin event HERE  

21) BIO·FICTION Barcelona, Spain: 23rd Jan 2016 at CCCB Montalegre, 5 - 08001 Barcelona, Spain/Catalunya. More infos HERE  

22) BIO·FICTION Lausanne, Switzerland: 16th Feb 2016. More infos about the Lausanne event HERE  

23) BIO·FICTION Tokyo, Japan: 20th Feb 2016. More infos about the Tokyo event HERE  

24) BIO·FICTION New Delhi, India: 15th April 2016. More infos about the New Delhi event HERE  

25) BIO·FICTION Shanghai, China: 14th and 21st May 2016. The event takes place at the Chronus Art Center, Building 18, No 50 Moganshan Road, Shanghai, PR China. More infos about the Shanghai event HERE  

26) BIO·FICTION Hong Kong: June 2016. The event will take place at Hong Kong Space Museum Lecture Hall on June 11th and at the Chinese University of Hong Kong on June 8th. More infos about the Hong Kong event HERE or HERE  

27) BIO·FICTION Istanbul, Turkey: 18th June 2016. More infos about the Istanbul event HERE. With the support of SYNENERGENE.  

28) BIO·FICTION Amsterdam, Netherlands: 25th June 2016. More infos about the Amsterdam event HERE  

29) BIO·FICTION Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station, Antarctica: 3rd July 2016.  

30) BIO·FICTION Stavanger, Norway: 12th August 2016. More infos about the Stavanger event HERE  

31) BIO·FICTION Bergen, Norway: 12th October 2016. Post-screening discussion can be found here HERE. A final report about the event can be found HERE.  

32) BIO·FICTION Accra, Ghana: 18th & 19th August 2016 as part of the Chale Wote Street Art Festival. More infos about the Accra event HERE  

You can find a summary of all BIO·FICTION on Tour events here:

Bildschirmfoto 2017-03-17 um 15.34.47  

If YOU want to host a BIO·FICTION on Tour event in your home town please contact us for further details.


BIO·FICTION 2014 is supported by




Do you want to become a BIO·FICTION sponsor?

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The people behind the festival

Dr. Markus Schmidt

Dr. Markus Schmidt


Tech assessment, art-science

Camillo Meinhart

Camillo Meinhart


Film maker, game designer.

Mag. Sandra Youssef

Mag. Sandra Youssef


Cultural anthropologist, art lover

Sonja Schachinger

Sonja Schachinger

Production assistance

Art exhibitions, art education, trouble shooter.

Birgit Schmidt MA

Birgit Schmidt MA


Designer and lecturer, experienced in finding virtual and real-world design solutions.

Jens Hauser

Jens Hauser

Curatorial advisor

Curator, researcher, writer



Biofaction KG is the creator of BIO·FICTION Science Art Film Festival. We will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to keep you updated. Please check the box below, if you want to be contacted by us:


BIO·FICTION Science Art Film Festival

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Biofaction KG, Kundmanngasse 39, 1030 Vienna, Austria


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