About the project

Johanna Rotko is a visual artist working with living materials, mainly different yeasts. She was first introduced to yeastograms in 2013 during a workshop organized by artist collective Pavillon_35 and Bioart Society and has been working with yeast images since then.
Yeastograms – images made with living yeast cells – are formed by cultivating yeast on a biological growth medium to create images out of photographs. UV-lights are used to expose raster images of human faces to yeast. During the chain of events human disappear under the moulds.
In the future, she wants to broaden her palette with microbes and open up the spectrum to include colourful creatures. In yeastograms, various microbes with unique features grow, like yeasts, bacteria, moulds, fungi, mycelium, and other unidentified species. She photographs the diverse changes in yeast images regularly during their existence. Carbon recyclers i.e. moulds play a major role as yeast images age.
She thinks, that we need images that make us think about our relationship with microbes, those little partners that there is an incomprehensible number around us and in us, holobionts. And that we all are part of nature, life.

The projects history from 23.3.2016 can be found on Instagram.


I learned the technique from the Pavillon_35 art collective in the year 2013 when they held a workshop with Bioart Society in Helsinki.

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