Colors are everywhere. Particularly in nature, they are responsible for the communication between individuals, in addition to other functions. However, we humans are often unable to see these colors, especially when they are invisible to our eyes—for example outside the human visible light spectrum or on the microscopic scale.

Bacteria is found in the most diverse environments, such as skin and water. They participate in processes that maintain life on the planet, such as soil decomposition and fertilization. Nevertheless, due to their microscopic sizes, they are unnoticed by humans.

Bacteria, like many other living beings, are capable of producing pigments that result in a diverse color palette. It is scientifically known that these colors have specific functions, such as self-protection and the production of oxygen. How can the visualization and materialization of these microscopic beings could create new meanings? What if the colors produced by them are an attempt to communicate with us? Can you understand what they are communicating?

In Invisibilia I have sought to understand how colors produced by bacteria may be interpreted by us humans, asking–among other questions–what is the message they communicate to us. Using visualization as a way of representing these microorganisms, I try to deconstruct the human archetypes attached to these species. For example, bacteria are seen as agents of contamination but in truth, create a bridge of dialogue between the micro- and the macro-universe. I believe that when we visualize and begin to interpret the messages transmitted by other species even if they are invisible to us, we will be capable of perceiving our role in the complex web of life. And, at least, postpone the ecocide ahead of us.

To find these pigmented bacteria, I worked with three different processes:

(in)visible, collecting samples of invisible or colorless matter, such as water, air, and saliva.

(de)composition, collecting samples of organisms in the process of decomposition.

(extra)ordinary, collecting samples of routine objects.


2021 · Invisibilia

           El Museo Francisco Oller y Diego Rivera, Buffalo, USA