I’ve been following the work of Johanna Schmeer for quite sometime now and it always takes me a minute to get my head around her new projects. Johanna is a respected product designer and researcher based in London and Berlin. She continues to explore new ways to incorporate scientific advances with beautiful design. Her new work, Bioplastic Fantastic, is really something special.
As interactive products are growing closer and closer to the body, and scientists are making advances in the use of biological matter in materials suitable for product design, it is feasible that soon biochemical processes will be taking place in and on our technological devices. Bioplastic Fantastic investigates new types of products and interactions which might emerge from these material innovations in the fields of bio- and nanotechnology. It speculates about the future design and use of domestic products made from enzyme-enhanced bioplastics.
Halfway between products and organisms, seven “biological devices” produce all food and energy needed for humans to survive simply by being exposed to light (through artificial photosynthesis). They produce water, vitamins, fibre, sugar, fat, protein and minerals through biological processes.
The devices are designed to be part of a biologically influenced domestic space, and their aesthetics are not machine-like or lab-like, to emphasize their domesticity and the design opportunities that might arise with these new types of materials: to make design more sensual, and less technical, less industrial.