Potential well

Potential Well

Piece description from the artist

Prismacolor archival art marker and Sakura pigma micron utrafine pigmented flet tip pen on acid free coated RENDR paper. 11 × 14 inches.

An artists visualization of a potential well for a complex thrmodynamic process such as protein folding. According to one popular theory, proteins have a unique natured state, which represents the lowest potential energy at the bottom of a deep energy well. Because the folding process is complex, the deep well is surrounded by shallower wells. These represent structural traps or misfolds, states where the molecule can end up and become stuck if it starts to head down the wrong path because of environmental conditions or just random events. You can imagine the red and pink circles as shallow traps along the spiraling paths down into the potential wells. The darker purple is a robust path into the well. The stippled patterns are low probability paths and events that create the complex and detailed geometry of the well.

Other works by Regina Valluzzi

About Regina Valluzzi

Waltham, MA

Dr. Regina Valluzzi has an extensive scientific background in nanotechnology and biophysics. She has been a scientist in the chemical industry, a green chemistry researcher, a research professor at the engineering school at Tufts, a start-up founder engaged in technology commercialization, and a start-up and commercialization consultant.

Even during periods of intense activity as a scientist, Dr. Valluzzi has always held a strong interest in the visual arts and in visual information. While she majored in Materials Science at MIT, she also obtained a second degree in music and a minor in visual studies. Visual arts have managed to permeate her technical work; during her Ph.D in Polymer Science and Engineering at UMass Amherst, she completed a thesis that required advanced electron microscopy, image analysis, and theoretical data modeling. These experiences provided the visual insight and information that now influences much of her artwork.

Dr. Valluzzi’s work has been included in private collections across the US, UK, Germany, Canada, Japan, Netherlands, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Dubai and Malta, and in the corporate collection of "Seyfarth Shaw" Boston law offices around Boston. She has a selection of pieces on loan to the MIT Materials Science and Engineering Department as indoor public art. Her accomplishments include having published thirty articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals, having made several scientific patents, having been a subject matter expert for an encyclopedia chapter, and having been invited to speak at science talks across the US, Europe, and Japan.

Her newsletter is a good source of ongoing information: http://eepurl.com/daiLQ

See Regina's portfolio here

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