It may seem extraordinary, but in fact mould in the home is a common health problem, affecting tens of thousands of people in the UK, explains Malcolm Richardson, Professor of medical mycology (the study of mould) at the University of Manchester.
One of our judges Bob Devereux has been creative:
Aspergillus becomes a top subject for artist and sculpture Fiona Hepburn. Fiona has used various screen printing techniques to design her amazing sculptures based on Aspergillus fumigatus. Quote froom her " The final images I produce are one-off pieces, made up of thousands of multiples. Each tiny 'spore' is printed using hand drawn stencils exposed on to a screen. The screenprinted spores are printed on to fragile Japanese paper. I reproduce the spores until I have thousands of them, often in variations of colours and tones. Each tiny 'spore' is hand cut with a scalpel and attached to a pin. I construct the work by pushing these pins in to a background image either made through screenprint or woodcut. It allows me to control the growth of the image, allowing for different parts of the image to be seen at different levels. Making the work is like watching the cells of growing mould multiply.
The judges have been studying all the entries and have now drawn up their shortlist. To view the shortlist click here. There were hundreds of entries of a very high standard and many were inspirational. We would like to congratulate all entrants on achieving such a high standard. Well done to all those who were shortlisted - and you will receive an email inviting you to bring your artwork for the final judging. Shortlisted entries will be exhibited at the Manchester Science Festival at the end of October.