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Oil and alkyd on linen, 16 x 12 inches                          Giclee available


A bit of a fantasy on protein folding and the possible role of amphiphilic interactions. It includes an artistic creative take on secondary, super secondary and tertiary structure.  Different colors are used to suggest and represent different degrees of hydrophobicity and hydrophilicity.  Different sizes and shades of green, yellow and blue circles evoke the many molecule components of a complex biological fluid.  As the colored dots cluster and define areas of hue, they also indicate the type of labile structures formed in complex liquids.  A set of interlocking highly curved dark green lines are reminiscent of a “mile high” view of protein globular structures, made from looped, curved and connected secondary and supersecondary structure motifs.  Patterning on top of the dark green linear shape suggests the substructures of helical conformatiuons and supersecondary folded motifs.  While not an exact quote from a technical diagram, these details still manage to convey the buildup of structure across different lengthscales and the complex chemistry of proteins.


The title “Coil to Globule” refers to a type of phase transition that macromolecules can typically undergo, from a disordered and low-density molecular shape to a more compact folded (or natured) structure.  This transition is believed to be a continuous (higher order or “second order”) phase transition which changes the fractal dimension of the macromolecule.




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