Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子 | Photosynthegraph - Yoko Shimizu - Bio Art - Art and Science
Graphic images are printed on plant leaves using photosynthesis. Yoko Shimizu - Lab +1e Tokyo 光合成により植物の葉にグラフィック印刷を行う実験インスタレーション。清水陽子 - Lab +1e Tokyo
art, science, bio, biology, biochemistry, bio tech, bio art, yoko shimizu, living, typography, bioart, photosynthesis, photosynthegraph, biodiversity, photography, photograph, plants, leaf, Lab +1e, 清水陽子, バイオアート, アート, 科学, 光合成印刷, 光合成, フォトシンセグラフ, 植物, 印刷, 生きる, タイポグラフィ, 写真
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About This Project


What is photosynthegraph?


Photosynthegraph is a combination of the words “photosynthesis” and “photograph.” It is an experimental installation series that explores the mechanism of photosynthesis.




Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


Photosynthesis is one of the most important chemical reactions in the history of our planet. It is the source of oxygen and energy, and the foundation of our food chain. Humans have utilized photosynthesis for food and industrial activities. Now we are taking one step further to expand the possibility to art and design.




Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


In the Photosynthegraph installation, a botanical lab is installed in the exhibition space. Graphic print films are attached onto plant leaves allowing chloroplasts to create starch based on the graphic patterns.




Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


The leaves are then treated chemically to visualize the graphics created by the chloroplasts. The completed images are delicate and beautiful, with a natural vintage feel – reminiscent of the history of life on Earth.




Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


The red lighting is from the plant factory LEDs that support the photosynthesis process.



Yoko Shimizu Ars Electronica


In the artist performance, the entire development process is demonstrated – from photosynthesis to chemical and heating treatments. It is fascinating to observe the way the graphic images slowly appear on the leaves.




Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子

The images created by the natural process show us that there are still infinite possibilities of technological advancement and artistic expression on this planet.




Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring printed on a leaf with photosynthesis.


Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


Printing process for Girl with a Pearl Earring
「真珠の耳飾りの少女」 製作工程


Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


Ingres’ Grande Odalisque printed on a leaf with photosynthesis.


Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


My Brooklyn studio – NY cupcakes


Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子


My Brooklyn studio – NY coffee

Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子

Development steps

Yoko Shimizu 清水陽子

Photosynthegraph at Ars Electronica

Yoko Shimizu Ars ElectronicaYoko Shimizu 清水陽子Yoko Shimizu Ars ElectronicaYoko Shimizu Ars Electronica



フォトシンセグラフ - 光合成印刷


Film, plants, H2O, CO2, iodine solution, ethanol, plant factory LED (sunlight).


“Photosynthegraph” is an experimental installation that explores the mechanism of photosynthesis. Graphic print films are attached onto plant leaves allowing chloroplasts to create starch based on the graphic patterns. The leaves are then chemically treated to visualize the graphics created through photosynthesis.
ギャラリー内に設置された植物ラボ。印刷用フィルムを取り付けて育成される植物たち。日光や植物工場用LEDの照射により、葉緑体はグラフィックパターン に沿って光合成を行います。生命活動によって作られるその図形は儚く神秘的で、地球上にはまだ新しい表現の可能性が無限に存在することに気づかされます。

Art, Biology, Chemistry