Living replica of van Gogh's ear on display in Germany

Jun 04, 2014

An artist has created a living replica of Vincent van Gogh's famously severed ear for an exhibition, a German museum said Wednesday.

Diemut Strebe, who specialises in artworks using , collaborated with scientists to reconstruct the Dutch master's ear using DNA from a relative and 3D printers.

"The ear is grown from tissue-engineered cartilage using computer imaging technology, and is identical in shape to van Gogh's ear," said Dominika Szope, spokeswoman for the ZKM Centre for Art and Media in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe.

The team used donated by Lieuwe van Gogh, the great-great-grandson of van Gogh's brother Theo.

Szope said the ear on display was made up of live cells as well as engineered components, creating a "living art-piece" entitled "Sugababe".

It explores the implications of genetic reproduction for the essence of the individual.

Visitors can speak to the ear using a microphone and the sound, once it has passed through the nutrient solution in which the ear is stored, is broadcast in the installation space.

The show will be on display in Karlsruhe until July 6 before moving to New York in early 2015.

One of most popular artists of all time, van Gogh suffered prolonged bouts of mental illness and depression. He notoriously sliced off part of his ear, and only sold one painting before his death in July 1890 at the age of 37.

Lieuwe van Gogh, who shares the Y chromosome of the troubled painter and around 1/16th of his genome, posted a picture of himself next to the museum replica on his Facebook account with the caption "Lend me an ear".

Explore further: New app turns Van Gogh fans into art detectives

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Blog follows restoration of Van Gogh artwork

Mar 11, 2010

A new blog will allow art lovers to follow the restoration, step by step, of Dutch post impressionist painter Vincent van Gogh's famous "The Bedroom", the Van Gogh Museum said Thursday.

Preserving van Gogh's priceless masterpieces

Nov 14, 2012

The chrome yellow pigment that renowned post-Impressionist artist Vincent van Gogh favored in priceless masterpieces like Sunflowers, the Yellow House and Wheatfield with Crows is especially sensitive to certain ...

Computer identifies authentic Van Gogh

Dec 21, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Dutch researcher Igor Berezhnoy has developed computer algorithms to support art historians and other art experts in their visual assessment of paintings. His digital technology is capable ...

Professor's algorithms unlock Van Gogh mysteries

Mar 31, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- A Cornell electrical engineering professor is helping art historians do a little detective work by using computing algorithms to identify which of Vincent Van Gogh's paintings came from the ...

Recommended for you

History books spark latest Texas classroom battle

Sep 16, 2014

As Texas mulls new history textbooks for its 5-plus million public school students, some academics are decrying lessons they say exaggerate the influence of Christian values on America's Founding Fathers.

Flatow, 'Science Friday' settle claims over grant

Sep 16, 2014

Federal prosecutors say radio host Ira Flatow and his "Science Friday" show that airs on many National Public Radio stations have settled civil claims that they misused money from a nearly $1 million federal ...

User comments : 0