The exhibition ‘En Vie-Alive’ stages 4 designers and architects who are already working with synthetic biology or tissue engineering. The design studio presents the new toolkit for designers: bacteria and DNA.

Biological Atelier/ Amy Congdon

This fictional atelier presents some of the tools needed to produce jewellery using tissue engineering techniques. Imagined for the year 2082, this design scenario stages custom made jewelry grown from the customer’s stem cells. The jewellery can be grown in petri dishes and grafted either permanently or temporally, depending on the customer’s choice.

You can see the spring summer and autumn winter 2082 collection presented in the ‘Agents Provocateurs’ theme.

Faber Futures: The Print Room/ Natsai Chieza

This studio showcase a traditional screen-printing textile technique using pigments produced by synthetic bacteria. Natsai Audrey Chieza works with Professor John Ward from UCL in London to reprogram bacteria to generate specific colour ranges. Once extracted from the bacteria the pigments can be screen-printed. Natsai combines craft techniques with cutting edge biotechnologies to produce the very first textiles printed with programmable colours.

Samples of the prints Natsai generated from the bacteria’s pigment were presented in an archive book in the ‘Bio Hackers’ theme.

Jenny Sabin Design Lab/ Université Cornell

Jenny E. Sabin’s work and research is at the forefront of a new direction for 21st-century architectural practice; one that investigates the intersections of architecture and science, and applies insights and theories from biology and mathematics to the design of material structures. Presented in this design lab is a selection of samples produced for different projects:

1. 24 individual 3D printed connector nodes to study cellular networking behavior as a life-size model; in collaboration with Dr. Peter Lloyd Jones for Smart Geometry 2010, Nonlinear Systems Biology and Design Cluster.

2. 3D printed network node for Ground Substance; in collaboration with Dr. Peter Lloyd Jones for SIGGRAPH 2009

3. petri dishes (4); material prototypes of eSkin in collaboration with Dr. Shu Yang

4. punch card for knitting machine

5. ‘Meander, Variegating Architecture’; a book by Jenny E. Sabin and Ferda Kolatan

6. copy of Science, February 2010; Branching Morphogenesis, a Sabin+Jones LabStudio project

7. selection of individual printed drawings, sketches and photos

You can see more about this project in the ‘The Plagiarists’ theme.

The Living/ David Benjamin

David Benjamin is an architect who explores Bio-synthesis, a new process for bacterial manufacturing of high-performance building materials through synthetic biology. Here we present a set to tools that allow him to study biological codes and to explore ways to incorporate these codes into new materials for architecture. Using autodesk Maja software, Benjamin can model biological codes and adapt or optimize them. The plastic samples on the lightbox have been 3D printed using a biological algorithm. This new composites are light and soft in some areas and much stronger in others.

You can see more about this project in the ‘Bio Hackers’ theme.