‘Biotic’ is an ongoing material research on the possibilities of a biologically grown material. In this project microbes are used to grow a biological material which is made of bacterial cellulose. Bacterial cellulose is made using yeast and bacteria in a fermentation process. During this process bacteria spin nano fibers of cellulose and produce a layer on the surface. When this layer has dried, it becomes a solid material that has comparable properties to leather. The material that the living microorganisms create is biodegradable, strong and has a high flexibility.
The goal of the project is to show the possibilities of this material and design within the properties of the material. The material, both in wet and dried phases, has various material properties. For example when the material is still wet, a texture can be applied and when the material has fully dried, the applied texture is still visible in the material.
The color can also easily be changed due to the high absorption of the grown material. After the growing process the studio experimented with different natural plant dyes and dyes made from fruit waste, to see how these dyes can affect the color and texture of the material. The experiments resulted in a collection of fabrics with different colors, translucency, applied textures and patterns.