Phage vs. Bacteria – Virus in an epic battle to infect and conquer its host bacteria

Bacteriophage, or phage, viruses that infect bacteria, pre-date dinosaurs. They are the most abundant and diverse organisms in the biosphere. They have been in a constant state of evolution and have adjusted to their environment while exchanging genes and traits with their bacterial hosts. In the end, they make sense, and are beautiful in their own unique ways, like a patchwork quilt or a post-apocalyptic robot constructed with spare parts and gears.

original phage vs bacteria

Original Phage vs. Bacteria – oil pastel on paper, 14″ x 11″

Phage vs. Bacteria depicts one virus in an epic battle to infect and conquer its host bacterium. My inspiration was Jules Verne’s 19th century novel, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea. The phage is the sea monster that attacks Captain Nemo’s submarine, the Nautilus, in this instance, a bacterium. Both phage and bacterium are depicted with steampunk elements in line with the style of the Nautilus in the 1954 science fiction film. The original artwork was an oil pastel on paper. I then vectorized the image for printing. This design was the visual identity for a regional science symposium for undergraduate students in Florida in April 2018.

Florida symposium t-shirts

Florida symposium t-shirts