GSA-Art: Minou Nowrousian
Guest post by Minou Nowrousian. GSA-Art features the creative works of scientists, particularly geneticists. Read more about the series from GSA President Stan Fields. If you would like to submit your own work or nominate someone else’s, please send an email GenesToGenomes@genetics-gsa.org with “GSA-Art” in the subject line.
I work at the Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany, and the main topics of my work are genetics and genomics of fungal development. Apart from being a biologist, I’m a photographer, and among my favorite subjects are (former) industrial sites and the changes brought about by the rise and fall of different types of industry in the Ruhr area in Germany.
This is still one of the most heavily industrialized and populated areas in Europe, but the two main types of industry that dominated the area until the 1960s, coal and steel, have been on a downward slide for decades. In the wake of this, the region has undergone major structural changes, leading to high unemployment rates and social problems, but also to the re-use of former industrial sites that changed most city landscapes beyond recognition. Today, the area is on course to being a knowledge- and high tech-based economy. Even though we are not quite there yet in some respects, one successful example is the Ruhr-University Bochum, which was the first university to be founded in this area about 50 years ago. Together with several friends, I’ve been taking pictures of industrial sites for many years, trying to document the changes that this area is constantly undergoing.