A crystal resin sculpture made up of the donated milk teeth of children is on display at an exhibition in The Bluecoat.
Liverpool-based artist Gina Czarnecki and stem cell biologist Professor Sara Rankin from Imperial College London have been asking children to donate their milk teeth in order to create PALACES, a glittering sculpture designed to raise awareness about stem cells.
The children who part with lost teeth are rewarded with a tooth token which they can then put under their pillow in anticipation of money, just as they would with the original tooth.
Czarnecki explained the reasons behind the artwork, saying: “Through exhibition and informed discussion, we’re looking to explore the questions this raises about the value of waste matter and our attitudes to our own bodies as sources and beneficiaries of recyclable material.”
The finished version of the sculpture, which is still being added to, is intended to resemble an underwater coral castle.
Czarnecki's previous works have focused on human relationships, evolution and disease. Her displays have been featured in major museums and festivals including the National History Museum in London and the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.
Recent discoveries in stem cell research have revealed that body parts no longer in use such as bones from joint replacements, fat from liposuction and milk teeth are rich sources of ’master cells’ that can help replace lost or damaged tissue.
The two metre-tall, two metre-wide sculpture will be on display at the Bluecoat until February 19th before heading to the Science Museum in London.
By Nathan Potter
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Children's milk teeth have been used to create the sculpture which stands over two metres' tall