British sculptor Katharine Dowson captures a promising piece of the puzzle for a future HIV vaccine. The image symbolises HIV - the fragile, and deadly organism that can shatter people’s lives. Katherine has created a trimer of proteins that form the envelope spike exposed on the surface of the HIV, which may be a key to developing an HIV vaccine. To make the intricate piece, Katharine laser etched the various layers of the trimer down to the smallest molecular level into crystal. There are 8 crystal blocks, each with a part of the trimer etched within, representing the collaboration of scientists around the world studying the virus and looking for a vaccine and a cure.
“I am fascinated with the important role trimers play in the quest for an HIV vaccine.”
British artist Katharine Dowson studied sculpture at the Royal College of Art and has exhibited in London, the United States of America, Brazil, Europe and Asia. Katharine employs various materials, including transparents in her work. She juxtaposes the domains of science, art and medicine, bringing the anatomical world to life. Learn more about Katharine Dowson.
Join Katharine in her studio as she talks about the reason why she chose the trimer as a subject, and the process of creating the sculpture.