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The human chromosome 22 on wall tiles in Pietra Piasentina limestone

Julia Marmi: „Genoma“.< Julia Marmi together with architects at Spangnulo and Partners have developed a decoration with philosophical meaning

Did you recognize yourself in the picture above, dear reader?

The work in Piasentina Stone shows a piece we all carry in us, namely chromosome 2. It is the first sequence of the human genome which had been completely deciphered in 1999.

Italian Julia Marmi Company used the design of the human chromosome to decorate wall tiles made of gray-brown limestone. The design originated from Spangnulo and Partners architects. Advisor and consultant were Valentina Massa, a genetic scientist at the University of Milan.

Let us speak of details to get an understanding of the picture.

Julia Marmi: „Genoma“.

Chromosome 22 contains 49 million base pairs. That makes it the second smallest chromosome we carry. These are molecules which make up our genes. The object in question is but one step above the atom.

Chemically, Chromosome 22 is all clear. But little is understod how its information is read, and: what steers the process of reading which is activating (or deactivating) a gene.

By setting markers, chromosomes can be segmented. This was the beginning of the idea behind the tiles by Julia Marmi Company, which, by the way.

Chromosome 22. Source: Genome Reference Consortium

We show a clip from a webpage of the Genome Reference Consortium. The human chromosomes bearing markers are depicted in the top part and below the special look at chromosome 22.

The dark stripes or green bars are brought to on Julia Marmi’s tiles of honed stone by laser engraving by Tossilab company.
The tiles are 60×40 cm and 1 cm thick.

Julia Marmi: „Genoma“.Julia Marmi: „Genoma“.

Slightly bizarre the picture of „Genoma“ in a living room showing the sofa and chairs behind: are the dwellers secretly looking upon themselves, or is it God looking down on all?

Surely this décor will find a home in a scientific institute seeking a super-modern image.

Natural stone, what with its longevity, intensifies the aura surrounding the secrecy of the gene.

Julia Marmi

Spagnulo and Partners

Genome Reference Consortium

Photos/Renderings: Julia Marmi

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(29.11.2019, USA: 11.29.2019)