Controversy on display

A Canadian art exhibit takes a different look at the ongoing debate surrounding human stem cell research

Jef Akst
Jef Akst

Jef Akst is managing editor of The Scientist, where she started as an intern in 2009 after receiving a master’s degree from Indiana University in April 2009 studying the mating behavior of seahorses.

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Jan 19, 2011
These days, talk of stem cells and the thorny ethical issues that come with studying them or using them as disease treatments pervades the classroom, the research lab, the courtroom, and certainly the media. And now stem cells have made their way into yet another venue -- the art museum.
Perceptions of Promise exhibition at the Glenbow Museum in Calgary
Image: Photo by Owen Melenka
"Stem cells is just a phenomenally controversial area of science," says linkurl:Timothy Caulfield,;http://www.law.ualberta.ca/centres/hli/about/people/staff/Caulfield a bioethicist at the Health Law Institute of the University of Alberta and one of the creators of linkurl:Perceptions of Promise,;http://www.perceptionsofpromise.com/ a stem cell-themed exhibit showing now at the linkurl:Glenbow Museum;http://www.glenbow.org/exhibitions/ in Calgary. "So we thought it was a perfect opportunity to explore the role of art as a way of commenting on the science and issues around it."Over the last couple of years, Caulfield has worked with linkurl:his brother...
Imagining SciencePerceptions of Promise was funded in part by the Canadian Stem Cell Network. It will show at the Glenbow Museum until March 20, 2011. The Caulfields are also in discussions with other potential host venues for the exhibit, but no firm plans have been made.



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