On the 26th of November 2020, our partners at Kersnikova organised on online discussion on reProductive Narratives, featuring Maja Smrekar, Gjino Šutić and Margherita Pevere. The session was moderated by Mojca Kumerdej.
Scientists have recently published the first successful differentiation of endometrial mesenchymal stem cells(EnSCs) into oocyte-like cells. Encouraged by their achievements, Smrekar and Šutić decided to induce EnSCs obtained from menstrual blood and differentiate them in-vitrointo germ cells. In ‘reProductive narratives’, the art project they are currently developing, they both view the process of in-vitro transformation of one’s own menstrual blood stem cells into reproductive cells as a possibility that offers new potentials to women’s emancipation. Until now, reproductive cells have been available to women through the process of IVF (in-vitro fertilisation), which includes complex and potentially harmful interventions to the body, while this safer and more ethical form, opens the path to new ways of reproduction, independent of one’s biological characteristics or traditional family and societal structures. By loosening the seemingly essential social patterns we are also coming closer to empowering anyone who would like to adjust their reproduction to fit their personal stories.
The narratives on reproduction will be developed through a discussion between the guest Margherita Pevere, an artist and researcher whose practice glides across biological arts and performance with a distinctive visceral signature, and the art duet Maja Smrekarand Gjino Šutić, an internationally acknowledged artist and a multidisciplinary researcher and innovation developer.