Using data from bacterial research lab OpenBiome, we are creating a series of drawings, interactive data visualization, video, and lecture performances which explore the geographic and cultural diffusion of fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) — a radical life-saving probiotic procedure. OpenBiome's alchemical endeavors are vital practices for building a culture of communal health. The project leverages the importance of the conservation of microbial diversity as a potent analogy for a multitude of cultural struggles. This body of work will is part of the year-long exhibition LMAO - Humor in Data opening in January at the Open Data Institute in London, UK.
Below are visualizations of gut bacterial ecologies of OpenBiome's FMT donors. OpenBiome shared the counts of each bacteria species in each of the donors’ guts. The data was run through machine learning algorithms to find 10 patterns in the relationships of bacteria to each other across the donor collective. Each color represents one of the 10 identified patterns.