Science and Art are More Compatible than You Think

We take a look at some of Markos Kay's (MRK) science-based intricate 3D visualisations, convulsive animations, and be warned, illustrations that might make you a little queasy.


Chromatin Fibre for HSS Rheumatology by Markos Kay

Science and art can be more compatible than you think. Often complex scientific concepts won’t make much sense without visualisation breaking down each step and honing in on the details of some of the smallest particles that make up this earth, and ourselves.

Markos Kay, aka MRK, has created a collection of illustrations, 3D visualisations and animations based on cellular and molecular biology and briefly touching on particle physics.

His work is the combination of projects spanning over six years, from 2010 to 2016, for scientific and academic publications.

We take a look at some his intricate 3D visualisations, convulsive animations, and be warned, illustrations that might make you a little queasy.

Image: A Markos Kay Chromatin Fibre illustration for HSS Rheumatology, New York

Chikungunya Virus

How Mutant Viral Swarms Spread Disease for Quanta Magazine by Markos Kay

This illustration is taken from Markos' work for Quanta Magazine based on the molecular structure of a RNA virus called Chikungunya. 

The illustration depicts how RNA viruses exist as a swarm of closely-related individuals.


Evolution

Life's Big Leaps: Critical Moments in Evolution for Quanta Magazine by Markos Kay

This four-part illustration by Markos was also created for Quanta Magazine.

It shows the critical steps in evolution from the Eukaryotic cell to multicellular organisms, to eusociality and complex brains.

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Biomedical Glass

A New Vision for Glass for Lehigh Research Review Vol. 1 by Markos Kay

This visualisation depicts the functionality of biomedical glass for Volume 1 of the Lehigh Research Review. The project was led by Himanshu Jain.

A film of protein envelops the troughs of the biomedical glass (in pink) while minerals attach to the top of the image.


Fluorescence Microscopy

Defying Limits for HHMI Bulletin Magazine by Markos Kay

Markos was commissioned by Pentagram for HHMI Bulletin Magazine to explain Nobel Laureate Eric Betzig’s work on the development of fluorescence microscopy. 


Fluorescence Microscopy

Defying Limits for HHMI Bulletin Magazine by Markos Kay

The fluorescence microscopy technique requires a three-dimensional view of the microscopic world, revealing the complex cellular processes and forms.

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The Powers of Ten

The Powers of Ten: Lymphocyte by Markos Kay

An international collaboration was held to celebrate 1977 Eames film The Powers of Ten.

In this image taken from a 3D animation showing 10 to the power of minus 5, a world of red and white blood cells are travelled through to reveal a lymphocyte, whose membrane is penetrated to reach its porous nucleus.


The Flow

Image from The Flow by Markos Kay

This is an illustration from the short film The Flow depicting the inner structures of a eukaryotic cell and the atom.


Defying Limits for HHMI Bulletin Magazine by Markos Kay

Markos is a visual artist, creative director, illustrator and lecturer based in London.

His work combines science and art, dealing with themes of emergence, evolution and complexity as well as artificial life and generative art.

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