The Synergy Project: An Experiment In Art And Science Collaboration

Synergy is an experimental program that catalyzes partnerships between artists and research scientists. With an emphasis on communication and collaboration, Synergy aims to provide meaningful creative and intellectual experiences for both the general public and for participating artists and scientists. We carefully select and match artists and scientists to work together to formulate a shared voice. We then present the outcome of these collaborations as group exhibitions that invite the public to engage with this unique collision of art and science. Synergy was conceived in early 2012 in affiliation with Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.

Distant worlds, immediate concerns

Researchers seek to visually communicate how human impacts such as overfishing, pollution, and carbon dioxide emissions have contributed to coral reef decline over the past few decades.

From bloom to book

WHOI ceanographers and a graphic designer team up to create Bloom, a book inspired by the ocean's voluminous seasonal phytoplankton seasonal phytoplankton blooms.

The Synergy Project: Weaving water

Physical oceanographer, Larry Pratt and artist, Anastasia Azure, collaborated to capture the essential motion of eddies through time-lapse photography of moving lights.

Synergy Project: Shaping Sound

Jonathan Fincke works in the field of Applied Ocean Physics & Engineering. He studies, zooplankton which are incredibly small marine animals that drift with the currents. They are central to the marine food chain. Because zooplankton are small and cameras cannot see large distances in the ocean, Jonathan and his colleagues use sound to study them instead.

Synergy Project: Cumulative Hope

Sophie Chu is a chemical oceanographer who studies ocean acidification. Ocean acidification is changing the conditions in the ocean. Carbon dioxide from pollution combines with seawater to form an acid. Sophie Chu's research looks at ways to quantify and measure the chemical changes in the ocean caused by ocean acidification.

The Synergy Project: Immensity In Minuteness

Along the edges of tectonic plates on the seafloor, molten rock wells up to form fresh rock. Cold seawater seeps through cracks in the rock and is heated, driving chemical reactions that transform seawater into hot, mineral-rich fluids that billow like smoke from chimney-like mineral formations called hydrothermal vents. Although out of range of the sun's rays, these areas are teeming with organisms that derive their energy from chemicals in the vented fluid. Jill McDermott and her colleagues investigate these chemical reactions, which may hold clues to the origin of life on our planet.

The Synergy Project: Sacred Intersections

Synergy is an experimental program that catalyzes partnerships between artists and research scientists. Ellie Bors studies deep-sea life. Laurie Kaplowitz creates mixed-media drawings and paintings.