Living Traces

Exhibition, practice-led research


Held in partnership with UTS Library during National Science Week, Living Traces celebrates the hidden and unnoticed traces that are left when humans interact with books. By visualising and investigating these unseen elements of human interaction, this exhibition draws attention to the ways objects change through use.


In collaboration with UTS Library curatorial staff, the microorganisms found on UTS Library books were cultivated using agar gel. Students and staff from across the university were asked to swab books that were being borrowed and returned. The resulting installation was a unique visualisation of bacteria across the Dewey Decimal cataloging system utilised globally by libraries. This exhibition builds on previous work centering around public libraries and the traces found in their collections.


Photographed by Jackson Mann.