Artistic Interpretation of a Malaria Transmission Scenario

Authors: Smith, P., boredomresearch and Isley, V.

Editors: Bowen, J., Diprose, G. and Lambert, N.

Start date: 11 July 2017

Journal: EVA London

Issue: 2017

Publisher: BCS: The Chartered Institute for IT

Place of Publication: London

ISBN: 978-1-78017-399-3

DOI: 10.14236/ewic/EVA2017.68

Aggressive deforestation in Malaysia, motivated by a dramatic intensification of agriculture is currently of significant concern for its potential to destabilise interactions between species in ways that are significant to human health. Reports have emerged from Malaysia of naturally acquired human infections of a malaria parasite, Plasmodium knowlesi, previously thought only to infect long-tailed and pig-tailed macaques. In humans P. knowlesi has a rapid 24-hour replication cycle resulting in mortality from severe malaria. In response to a growing desire to understand the potential for spatially sensitive models of disease transmission and better understand the complex behaviour of infection transmission, the artist collaboration boredomresearch partnered with a mathematical modeller on an artistic expression which presents a malaria infection transmission scenario. The project combines tools and techniques from ecology, epidemiology, computer gaming and contemporary arts practice to explore this zoonotic malaria in Malaysia. This paper presents some of the insights and questions that arose from this collaboration to offer a view that encourages increased interaction across domains. Ultimately, highlighted are some potential distortions revealed during the transdisciplinary interaction.

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