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Startup Says It Can Turn You and Your Cat's DNA into Works of Art

Mar 15, 2014

Fast Company just profiled a New York City startup called Genetic Ink, which aims to produce art based on human — even pet! — DNA.

The company will send consumers a DNA collection kit, and they will have to send a cheek swab back. DNA from dogs and cats can be imaged as well. In its FDA-approved lab, the startup will use an algorithm to sequence the DNA, and it keeps samples anonymous to protect clients' privacy. The artwork can be produced in 17 different colors and four different sizes, and can reportedly range from $200 for a 12-by-16-inch canvas to $700 for a 3-by-4-foot one.

It is the latest example of DNA being used to create art. In fact, last year, artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg made headlines for making 3D faces from genetic material on cigarette butts, gum, and strands of hair that she picked up off of the street.

While critics have called that kind of work "very creepy," Alex Pyatetsky, a senior advisor at Genetic Ink, told Fast Company, "We can express your DNA in a way that really expresses you, and it can be beautiful."

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