The Nanoessence is the forthcoming project investigating a comparison of atomic vibrations taking place between living and dead skin cells, when touched by a Atomic force Microscope (AFM) silicon nitride cantilever. The skin cells will be scanned by the AFM in contact and force spectroscopy mode to determine the topography and atomic vibration as the tip scans the cell.

Using the (AFM) in contact mode the cantilever is lowered to literally touch the surface of the skin cell. This mode explores the topographies gathering deflection data that is translated to produce a visual landscape. In the force spectroscopy mode the process can be imagined in the same way as the pulse is monitored by a doctor’s finger, it records the movement of the atoms surface membrane.

The project will examine at a sub cellular level a re-spatialisation within the human context. The space of the body is seen at an atomic level as having no boundaries. The humanistic discourse is consumed by Nanotechnologies in fracturing the frailty of what constitutes living.The single cell in Nanoessence is analysed to examine the comparisons between the organism and the machine, between living and dead.

The comparative study is to be initially developed through a collaboration with SymbioticA Lab, University of Western Australia and the Nanochemistry Research Institute, (NRI) Curtin University of Technology.

The data from AFM will be analysed to do a comparative study of the difference that exist between living and dead skin cells by constructing two topographies that can be mapped to extract the difference in the data. The data difference that occurs at the Nano level will then be used to constructed a third generative topographical landscape. The installation will present three cellular terrains with the middle generative landscape presenting the essence of life or living.