Yoko Shimizu


Photosynthegraph combines photosynthesis and photography to print graphic images on plants. Films are attached to plant leaves and exposed to plant LED lights, allowing chloroplasts to create starch based on the graphic patterns. The leaves are then chemically treated to visualize the graphics created by the chloroplasts. 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. The images created by the natural process are delicate and beautiful, showing us that there are still infinite possibilities of technological advancement and artistic expression on this planet.


Materials: Plants, seeds, film, chemical solution, laboratory equipment, LED lights (sunlight)
Year: 2015 – present

Exhibitions: BioBAT Art Space (2022-2023), Museum of Modern Art Tokyo (2020-2021), Science Gallery Bengaluru (2020), NARS Foundation (2019), Steirischer Herbst Festival (2017), Ars Electronica Festival (2016), LAD GALLERY (2015)

Image Credit: Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, BioBAT Art Space, Yoko Shimizu