Drosophila titanus

Andy Gracie

3 April 2011


Drosophila titanus is an ongoing and long-term project which through a process of experimentation and artificial selection aims to breed a species of the fruit fly, drosophila, that would theoretically be capable of living on Saturn’s largest moon, Titan. While being a virtually impossible project to complete “successfully”, Drosophila titanus sites itself as a process within the ongoing discourse surrounding the complex relationships between art and science. By necessity the project needs to adhere to a rigorous scientific methodology and framework, however it endeavours to extract artistic metaphor, poetry and ambiguity from these apparent creative restrictions. The work embraces several interwoven narratives and concepts related to issues of species, artificially created organisms and the disquieting quest for biological perfection. Inherent in its discussion are darker issues such as Social Darwinism and its ultimate expression in eugenics. This search for biological perfection and the notion of the ideal genome are heavily implicated in the practice of artificial selection.