Science-Inspired Student Art Show

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Artwork by Physical and Life Science undergraduate majors enhances the new Young Hall Student Center and Lounge.

By Julie Heinrich (UCLA Chemistry and Biochemistry Student Affairs Officer) Thanks to a suggestion by Dr. Maria Dzialo (Ph.D. ’15 biochemistry and molecular biology, Steven Clarke group), the undergraduate office invited undergraduate students to submit original science-inspired artwork to enhance the new Young Hall Student Center and Lounge. We collected submissions from artists across South Campus and held a vote among a group of faculty members. The winning artists were Kathleen Dinh, fourth year, physiological sciences major, for Florals and Physiology (first place), and Itrat Batool, fourth year, molecular, cell, and developmental biology major, for Fly Away (second place). Submissions that received honorable mention are listed below. All art is on display in the Young Hall Student Center and Lounge – 4222 Young Hall.  They can also be viewed on the online gallery.

Art Show Winners3

(Left) First place entry Florals and Physiology by Kathleen Dinh. (Right) Second place entry Fly Away by Itrat Batool.


Prof. Yung-Ya Lin with artist Kathleen Dinh, fourth year physiological sciences major.

“I am a 4th year, integrative biology and physiology (Phy Sci for short) major and will be graduating this spring,” said Kathleen Dinh, first place winner. “Watercolor has been the media for painting I especially enjoy, because with a hectic student schedule, it provides a very rewarding stress-reliever in which I can just pick up a paintbrush whenever I need a study break. I love working with a blend of vibrant colors, and my signature usually includes floral designs- especially orchids because my mom’s name translates to “orchid” in Vietnamese. What also inspires my artwork is my major, because I can coincide what I love studying to what I love doing as a hobby. I have the ability to interpret the abstract ways in which I perceive human anatomy from the lecture hall onto canvas.”


Prof. Yung-Ya Lin with artist Itrat Batool, fourth year molecular, cell, and developmental biology major.

“I am a molecular cell and developmental biology major. I got the opportunity to work with Drosophila Melanogaster, more commonly known as fruit fly, during my second year of college. Since then I have been seized by its beauty,” said Itrat Batool, second place winner. “I remember examining and admiring the spiky hairs, the mesmerizing eyes and the exquisite wings for hours under the microscope. They are the most beautiful, inspiring and powerful genetic tools for molecular biologists. In my lab I dissect the third instar larvae and look at various organs to characterize the expression of certain genes. I can’t stop imagining how beautiful can human beings be, who are much more complex and complicated, if a fruit fly can be so beautiful and amazing. Working with them has just led me to appreciate myself more. My admiration for Drosophila lead to me to this artwork and this just serves as a tiny token of appreciation where I have used their brain and the salivary glands dyed with To-PRO3.”

All entries can be viewed on the online gallery. The original artwork is on display in the Young Hall Student Center and Lounge in Young Hall 4222.

Science-inspired Art Show Winners:

First place: Kathleen Dinh, fourth year, physiological sciences major, Florals and Physiology 

Second place: Itrat Batool, fourth year, molecular, cell, and developmental biology major, Fly Away

Honorable Mention:

Ava Abuchaei, fourth year, biology major, Mind Games

Bryan Chen, second year, art and biochemistry double major, Study of Lung Cells

Hesper Chen, first year, neuroscience major, A budding hydra and a budding dream 

Ashley Clemens, first year, biochemistry major, Niel Bohr’s Model of the [Hydrogen]- Atom

Chelly Jin, second year, design | media Art major, Biochemistry of a Kiss

Natalie Mok, fourth year, psychobiology major, The Unique One in a Million

Allison Nguyen, fourth year, biochemistry major, The Strands of Life

Kimberly Nguyen, third year, biochemistry major, Exploration: the Edge of Dreams

Deborah Ojigho, third year, biology major, Personified Representation of Uniquitylation

Sepideh Parhami, fourth year, neuroscience major, Correlated Neuronal Activity in the Mouse Basal Ganglia

Chloe Noel Purgason, third year, physiological sciences major, Earth. Air. Water. Fire.

Kaitlyn Smith, third year, ecology, behavior, and evolution, Untitled

Eunji Song, second year, cognitive science major, Mapping Neural Connections

Austin Wang, first year, psychobiology major, Brain Tree

David Patrick Watson, third year, atmospheric, oceanic, and environmental sciences major, The Gymnast 

Photos by Penny Jennings, UCLA Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry