How can we create playful encounters in and out of the lab to reveal alternative possibilities for synthetic biology that nurture community, resilience, and hope?
We are thrilled to announce that Corinne Okada Tahara has been selected as the Ginkgo’s 2022 Creative Resident!
Corinne is a community artist activist and STEAM educator who creates playful art/science workshops celebrating culture and creativity to elevate community voices in conversations centred on sustainability and biotechnology. Previously, she was a Program Director of Xinampa community biolab in Salinas, California, a co-founder of BioJam (a teen biodesign program), and a co-founder of the San José AYA Art & Design Thinking Camp. In addition, she has led four youth teams in the Biodesign Challenge, is a 2020 Global Community Biosummit Fellow, a 2020 National Public Interest Technology Innovation Fellow, and has led biomaterial sustainability workshops in Atlanta, Los Angeles, and Hawaii.
During her time at Ginkgo, Corinne will be exploring the theme of PLAY, supported by the Faber Futures & Ginkgo’s creative team, and under the mentorship of our brilliant external jury: Shira Chess, Latasha Wright, Knowledge Chikundi, and Karen Feder.
In the coming months, Corinne will work on the development of a speculative design play kit, the Floating Kīpuka Grow Kit, which blends knowledge across time and cultures, to create playful spaces for more voices in the discussions of equitable and just biofutures. The kit aims to be a model for multidirectional learning and sharing, inviting people to imagine new types of playful spaces of trust for collaboratively dreaming with biology, with a focus on agricultural futures. In addition to her explorations on-site at Ginkgo, Corinne will bring the design process to community spaces in Salinas, California and Hawaii—which have been deeply involved in sustainable and socially-just agricultural innovation, yet historically excluded the mainstream conversations—to widen the scope of perspectives involved in co-shaping the kit.
To play is to be in the world. It is to be open to surprise, contingency, and improvisation—a critical skill for our intertwined futures. During this year’s residency, a design attitude routed in playfulness will help us imagine alternative ways of being in the world. We hope it will allow us to learn not only what is useful, but what can be possible.
We are looking forward to sharing how this year’s Residency unfolds. Stay up to date with Corinne’s work via the Residency’s new website and the Instagram page!
More information on the Ginkgo Creative Residency can be accessed here.