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Our immune system accepts silk on surfaces as sensitive as the human brain. When visual artist and poet Jen Bervin read that researchers were experimenting with silk medical sensors for patients monitoring serious health conditions, she asked, “If I were to have a silk sensor embedded under MY skin, what would I want it to say?” She imagined that the content the device carried could hold a great deal of meaning for the patient.

With Creative Capital’s support, Jen embarked on a three-year journey to create a series of microscopic poems exploring the themes of silk, healing and the body. Working with medical research labs, and drawing on research from textile archives across the world, Bervin began exploring the body and history’s intricate connection to the material of silk. In May 2016, her series of nano-printed silk poems premieres in the international exhibition “Explode Every Day: An Inquiry into the Phenomena of Wonder” at MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA.