About Steven Durbach
Steven Durbach, aka Sid Sledge worked as a scientist doing genetic research on bacteria and viruses from 1995-2008 before turning to art full time.
Upon emigrating to Australia, he worked as an artist drawing in his knowledge and insights from the study of evolutionary theory to see what story that could tell in the arts. His principle media are drawing; kinetic sculpture and drawing animation. He has recently taken on a more research-based performative approach where during installations, performances and residencies, primarily at science institutions and other non-art spaces, he uses an experimental approach to engage the audience and evolve his work.
He has held several solo exhibitions including in 2016 at the Bondi Pavilion Gallery (Schrodinger’s Bird) and the Willoughby council’s Incinerator Art Space in 2021 (Wobbly Machine). The former was in collaboration with UNSW’s Centre for Quantum Computation and Communication Technologies (now Silicon Quantum Computing). He Has worked with several scientific organizations and scientists with a long-standing relationship with CSIRO’s Lindfield Hub.
Part of his mission is to present work at science institutions and in science contexts such as recently in (2022) where he held a performance of art walking into science at Top Ryde Library as part of National Science Week exploring the interfaith of art and science he has hosted online CSIRO supported encounters between Australian artist and scientists in an attempt to understand or find common ground between these two cultural entities.
Curriculum Vitae – Steven Durbach
1998-2002 PhD in Genetics; University of the Witwatersrand; Johannesburg, South Africa
2002-2008 Worked as Lecturer and Researcher in The Dept. of Molecular and Cell Biology at the University of the Witwatersrand
2008-present Independent artist at Sid’s Ledge
Selected Science / Art Publications
Durbach S.I. 2020. A Critique of Pure Measurement. FYIN Paper online Geoculture magazine
Durbach S.I., Springer B., Machowski E.E., North R.J., Papavinasasundaram K.G., Colston M.J., Böttger E.C. and Mizrahi V. 2003. DNA Alkylation Damage as a Sensor of Nitrosative Stress in Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Infect. Immun. 71(2): 997–1000.
Durbach S.I., Andersen S. and Mizrahi V. 1997. SOS induction in mycobacteria: Analysis of the DNA-binding activity of a LexA-like repressor and its role in DNA damage induction of the recA gene from Mycobacterium smegmatis. Molecular microbiology. 26. 643-53.
2022 Bondi Housewarming Residency (August) with Dr. Sarah Jane Moore (principle applicant)
2020 Culture at Work residence (Pyrmont) - 1 week, November
2018 Workshop at Science Gallery (Melbourne) - PERFECTION EXHIBITION
2017 Residency at CSIRO (October, November)
Performances and Installations
2022 Performance / Talk as “The Scientist”. The Theory of Genesis. School of Astrobiology, UNSW
2022 CSIRO-supported National Science Week Performance of ‘Art walking into Science’, Ryde Library
with Dr. Sarah Jane Moore
2022 Moderating panel for a CSIRO supported discussion as part of National Science Week. ‘Does science
work properly?’; Chatswood Library
2022 Moderator on panel discussion ‘time will tell’ exhibition at Incinerator Art Space, May
2020 Coffee in the Studio (online encounters between artists and scientist); a CSIRO supported Inspiring
Australia sponsored event for National Science Week.
2019 CSIRO (Lindfield) installation and performance of a mechanical assemblage as part of National Science Week 2015 (Sept) to 2016 (May) Collaboration with Centre for Quantum Computation and Communication Technologies, UNSW
2016 Installation at CSIRO/AIP Industry Day (November)
Selected Solo Exhibitions
2020 WOBBLY MACHINE, Incinerator Art Space, Willoughby
2018 (Joint Solo with Beric Henderson); ULTRAGRAFIK Fine Art (Port Macquarie)
2016 Schrӧdinger’s Bird ; collaboration with Centre for Quantum Computation and Communication
Technologies (CQC2T); Bondi Pavilion Gallery
2013 Queen street Gallery. Sid Sledge and other Birds. Woollhara (August)
Selected Group Exhibitions
2022 The Healer. Exhibition of animation work at Sydney Jewish Museum
2021 ‘And they taught the canaries to sing.’ Exhibition of animations at an Online Event; Sydney Jewish
2018 Illuminate Group Exhibition at Timber Mill Galleries, Bulli
2017 Field of Dreams; 14 Sept – 14 Oct; ULTRAGRAFIK; Port Macquarie
2015 A Bit Blue 3; GKJE gallery 1 Mercure Hotel , Kings Cross
2014 Redfern Artist Group show (Home); Gallery 107 in Redfern; 15 Oct to 25 Oct
2016 The Art of Mind Bending Physics; ABC Science; Daniel Keane
2016 Quantum World. The Art of Uncertainty; The Australian; John Ross
2019 ARTSCI – WHERE ART IMPACTS WITH SCIENCE (https://www.scienceweek.net.au/artsci-where-art-
2020 Curiosity the cornerstone for artists and scientists; Interview on Radio National’s, The Science show
with Robyn Williams