The Amyloid Project stems from a collaboration between urbanSTEW and ASU biophysics research professor, Dr. Sara Vaiana. Dr. Vaiana’s research focuses on a unique class of proteins found in the human body, called Intrinsically Disordered Proteins (IDPs). IDPs are important because of their potential to better understand the underlying causes of diseases such as Alzheimer’s and diabetes. IDPs, unlike other proteins, do not fold into well-defined 3-dimensional structures under physiological conditions. This clumping inhibits proteins from carrying out their essential biological functions, and thus creates amyloids, which lead to the onset of diseases such as Alzheimer’s and diabetes. Dr. Vaiana is studying the unique structural properties of IDPs. This research is extremely complex but holds great potential to impact a large portion of our community who suffers or knows someone who suffers from diseases caused by protein aggregation.
Commissioned by Mesa Arts Center’s SPARK! Festival of Creativity, urbanSTEW created 6 unique noise machines. Intonarumori was inspired by a futurist art movement fathered by experimental painter and composer Luigi Russolo. In 1913 he wrote L’Arte dei Rumori, translated as The Art of Noises. Russolo built noise machines to recreate the sounds of the Industrial Revolution, so in honor of the 100 year anniversary of The Art of Noises, urbanSTEW built noise machines to recreate the sounds of our current Digital Revolution.