On March 4th, The Bactintorium collective will discuss their research during a live panel Q&A as part of the Natural Dyes in Northeast America Symposium. They have been researching dyeing techniques using pigment-producing bacteria since 2017 and have developed the first menstrual blood agar protocol for culturing microbes.
The Bactinctorium members have a rich, complementary set of interests and backgrounds and came together after participating in one of WhiteFeather Hunter’s bacteria dyes workshops in the Speculative Life BioLab. They began researching a red/pink-producing bacterium called Serratia marcescens and later expanded their palette when they started experimenting with Vogesella indigofera — a bacterium that produces the blue pigment indigoidine and naturally grows in freshwater and environments high in iron and other metals. This is what inspired the team to start working with menstrual blood as a nutrient.
The conference is divided into three parts and The Bactinctorium is presenting as part of Symposium Three: Pasts & Futures, which explores the complex connections between historical natural dyeing techniques and new innovations and directions. Visit the Natural Dyes Conference website to learn more about The Bactinctorium’s research, watch their intervention, and register for their panel discussion Q&A on March 4th, 5-6pm. The Bactinctorium is Geneviève Moisan, Vanessa Mardirossian, WhiteFeather Hunter, and Alexandra Bachmayer.