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Artist uses DNA for inspiration

NEW YORK (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - An artist is finding an out of the ordinary inspiration for her work, specifically your DNA.

"From a cigarette butt were someone's ancestors likely came from, their gender, eye color, hair color, complexion," said Artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg.

New York Artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg is making 3D facial imprints out of discarded items. She uses anything that might carry a trace of someone's DNA.

Once she finds a sample, she takes it to the lab, mines the DNA, then feeds the information into a computer that generates a 3D model of a face.

"The faces have a general likeness. It might look like a family resemblance. Right now I can't determine age so all of my masks are aged between 20 and 40," said Dewey-Hagborg.

Dewey-Hagborg started the project called "Stranger Visions" after creating her self-portrait two years ago.

Now, she's hoping it'll raise questions about genetic privacy.