CSM Agar Art Contest 2019

What Is Agar Art?

GuardsmanAgar Art is a painting in a petri dish with microorganisms as your paint. Your paint is alive and interacting with its environment to create art unlike anything you may have ever seen! Microorganisms can change the color of your agar, add funky texture, and fluoresce under UV light. 

Painting with microorganisms is a tradition among microbiologists that has been around since the time of Alexander Fleming the multi-talented scientist who discovered penicillin (see left). We are proud to bring this tradition to KSU for the very first time! We hope you will join us for our first ever Agar Art Studio and brief workshop in the microbiology teaching lab.

 Who Can Participate?

There are three competing categories for the CSM contest: Undergraduate, Graduate, and Faculty.

  • Undergraduate students must have taken BIOL 3440L or be currently enrolled in BIOL 3440L.
  • Research students (both graduate and undergraduate) who may not have taken BIOL 3340L, but have experience in handling microbes can also participate, and are encouraged to bring their own media or submit their entries by email directly.

In short, you must have verifiable experience in microbiology and aseptic techniques to be allowed to use the studio. Research students and faculty are free to make their agar art at their own labs and submit their entries by email (see contest rules below). 

Submissions will be uploaded on this website for judging. Contest winners will be announced in December and winning entries will be displayed at the CSM Fall Research Symposium to be held on Dec 6th.

We also encourage you to submit your art to the ASM National Agar Art contest here: https://www.asm.org/Events/2019-ASM-Agar-Art-Contest/Home*

The photo submission deadline is October 22nd for the ASM contest and October 31st for the CSM contest.

Available times for the Agar Art Studio (Sc370):

The micro teaching lab (Sc370) is available at specific times for students needing lab space, colorful microbes, or materials. Sign up to reserve your spot by emailing: agarart2019csm@gmail.com Walk-ins are welcome!

  1. Tuesday, Oct 15th between 2-5PM.
  2. Friday, Oct 18th between 11AM-1PM.
  3. Monday, Oct 21st between 3-5PM (last opportunity to make the ASM contest).
  4. Friday, Oct 25th between 11AM-1PM.

Contest Rules: 

Submissions must be emailed to agarart2019csm@gmail.com by 11:59PM on October 31st to be considered.

  • HibiscusPlease indicate whether you are an undergrad, grad student, or faculty.
  • You can submit up to two pieces for the contest.
  • Pieces must be accompanied by a title that captures key features of the piece.
  • Pieces should be new and original. No digital or artificial enhancements or manipulations (e.g., false coloring through lighting or Photoshop) are permitted. 
  • Students may photograph their creations at any of the above times.
  • Research students and faculty are free to make their agar art at their own labs and submit their entries by email. Research students must cc their PIs in their email. 

Check back for more info, entries, and updates.

* We are not affiliated in any way with ASM or the ASM Agar art contest. This event is solely held for CSM students and faculty.