"As a designer and artist, I’m interested in whether biology can ever truly be designed, and if it can, using design to ask what we should — or shouldn’t — be designing with it."
Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg is a designer, artist and writer exploring emerging technologies, developing new roles for design.
As Design Fellow on Synthetic Aesthetics, an NSF/EPSRC-funded project at Stanford University and the University of Edinburgh, she has been curating an international programme researching synthetic biology, art and design, investigating how we might ‘design nature.’ Synthetic Aesthetics will be published by MIT Press in January 2014.
Daisy is exploring potential roles for design in a 'Biotech Revolution.' Works include The Synthetic Kingdom, a proposal for a new branch of the Tree of Life; E. chromi, a collaboration with James King and Cambridge University’s grand-prize-winning team at the 2009 International Genetically Engineered Machine competition (iGEM) and a science fiction short story - The Well-Oiled Machine, co-written with Oron Catts while resident at SymbioticA, the art and science laboratory at the University of Western Australia in 2009. Daisy taught both the ArtsScienceBangalore and Cambridge University iGEM teams in 2010. In 2011, Daisy designed Synthesis, a one-week intensive synthetic biology lab workshop for artists, designers, scientists and others, in collaboration with The Arts Catalyst, UCL, SymbioticA, and Synthetic Aesthetics, funded by The Wellcome Trust. Daisy guest-edited the December 2012 issue of the scientific journal Current Opinion in Chemical Biology. Most recently, she has led the curatorial team for Grow Your Own... Life After Nature for Science Gallery Dublin.
Daisy studied Architecture at Cambridge University, Design at Harvard University, and MA Design Interactions at the Royal College of Art, where she is beginning PhD research in 2013. Her work has been exhibited at MoMA NY, The Art Institute of Chicago, The Wellcome Trust, London’s Design Museum, the Israel Museum, Tokyo's Museum of Contemporary Art and the National Museum of China. Daisy publishes, teaches and lectures internationally: recent talks include TEDglobal, PopTech and Design Indaba. In 2011, her collaborative work was nominated for the Brit Insurance "Designs of The Year" and the Index Award, and she won the World Technology Award (Design). In 2012, Daisy received the first London Design Medal for Emerging Talent.
Daisy leads Studio Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg Ltd.
Royal College of Art MA Design Interactions
10/2007 - 07/2009, London, UK
Dissertation: "Design Evolution: Microbes and the Everyday" [Distinction]
09/2005 - 06/2006, Cambridge, USA
Herchel Smith Scholarship from Cambridge University
Visiting student at Graduate School of Arts and Sciences & Graduate School of Design
Cambridge University MA (Cantab) Architecture, First Class
09/2001 - 06/2004, Cambridge, UK
Ranked first in graduating year
Purcell Miller Tritton Prize (Best Overall Student).
Nominated for entry in RIBA President's Medals Awards.
Dissertation: “Consuming Architecture:
Exploring the Ethics of a Sustainable Brandscape”
Awards & Nominations
London Design Medal
Winner, Emerging Talent
London Design Festival, September 2012
World Technology Awards
World Technology Awards & Summit, New York, October 2011
Designs of the Year
Brit Insurance Designs of the Year Award, Design Museum, London
Exhibition February 16 - August 2011
Bio:Fiction Science, Art & Film Festival
Natural History Museum, May 14 2011, Vienna
Special Mention, 2010
Australian Bicentennial Fellowship
Awarded by Kings College London to undertake research at SymbioticA, 2009
Herchel Smith Scholarship to Harvard University
Emmanuel College, Cambridge University, 2005 - 2006
Purcell Miller Tritton Prize
Best Overall Student
Department of Architecture, Cambridge University, 2004
Residencies, Fellowships & Projects
Artist in Residence, WISB
Researcher and Curator, Grow Your Own
Science Gallery Dublin
April 2013 - October 2013
Design Fellow, Synthetic Aesthetics
Connecting Synthetic Biology & Creative Design
Stanford University, USA & Edinburgh University, UK,
Feb 2010 -
Visiting Fellow, ESRC Genomics Forum, University of Edinburgh, Feb 2010
Residency, SymbioticA , University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia, Sept 2009 - Dec 2009
Co-organiser, Long Now London
General Public Agency
London, Mar- Aug 2007
Cofounder and designer, GSD Green Design,
Harvard Graduate School of Design, Harvard University
Sept 2005 - May 2006
Architecture + Urbanism Unit, Greater London Authority
London, Feb - Aug 2005