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In the COS-7 series, I investigate cancer cells as elegant representations of suffering and disease. These works are derived from studies of COS-7 cells, fibroblast-like cells originally taken from monkeys that have been transformed to express Simian virus (SV40) T-antigen most often used to study aspects of human cancers. Working collaboratively with Dr. Susan Walsh, Associate Professor of Cell Biology at Soka University of America, the referenced cells (some of which are pictured above) were cultivated in her lab and then imaged using an Axiocam microscope camera. The sculptural forms were modeled in Fusion 360 and then constructed by hand using modified cold-molded and plank-on-frame boatbuilding techniques wherein thin strips of hardwood veneer are bent over and affixed to a fuselage-type frame using pigmented epoxy. Despite the damage they may inflict upon us as individuals, when viewed under a microscope, these cancer cells are lovely in isolation, possessive of an elegant albeit terrifying beauty, sublime in their monstrous, phenomenological horror.

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