Hoekmine has developed the first study of the genetics of structural colour in bacteria. This research shows how genetics can change the colour, and appearance, of certain types of bacteria, opening up the possibility of harvesting them for the large scale manufacturing of biodegradable, sustainable, non-toxic paints that could be 'grown' and not made.
Desintegra.me is a project by Chilean designer Margarita Talep that focuses on the production of different types of bioplastics manufactured through raw material extracted from algae. She adds colour by using natural dyes from vegetable waste. The versatility of the algae derived material means that it has the potential to generate many different types of bioplastics – some more rigid and others more flexible.
Studio Samira Boon is a textile architecture studio with a strong focus on creating flexible and dynamic environments inspired by nature and natural systems. They develop site specific solutions using adaptive textiles inspired by origami patterns that improve the use and experience of spaces, and ensure efficient energy usage, acoustic ambience and climate regulation.
Clemence has developed a material by harnessing challenging waste from the slaughter industry such as blood, bone, fat, skin, hair, animal trimmings and urine, all of which can be hugely problematic to the environment. She aims to not only reduce the waste generated, but also help change our perception of it.
Product packaging is designed to been thrown away, no matter how beautiful or what it is made of. Mi Zhou proposes that packaging material for shampoo and other toiletry products be made out of soap. Therefore once you have finished with the product inside, you go on to use the packaging as well.
(Photo credit: Xinjia Zhou)
Red Mud was conceived to explore methods of transforming industrial wastes into alternative materials such as ceramics and concrete. The team has created functional and decorative objects to show the potential of materials such as red mud, the byproduct of refining bauxite ore into alumina, and other metallurgical/mining wastes from copper and steel.
In nature, organisms are resilient to change because they can adjust their immediate surroundings in response to environmental stimuli. Inspired by this, Re:flex was developed–a material that can change its shape or return to its original form when activated by heat. Re:flex offers a low cost, widely available and more sustainable alternative to conventional shape memory materials.
Finite is a new composite material made from desert sand, developed by a team of graduates from the RCA and Imperial College London. This material is a low-carbon alternative to concrete and is biodegradable and reusable. Finite uses a new binder to help effectively bind together desert sand into structures.
London based Dzek and Formafantasma collaborated to produce an architectural product that makes use of volcanic lava’s material properties, called ExCinere – a careful balance of porcelain body, ash glazes, firing temperature and method. Their colours and textures are created by mixing varying quantities, particle sizes and densities of volcanic matter.
Elissa Brunato harnesses bio-technologies to create colourful, shimmering sequins from naturally abundant cellulose, a material that is also lightweight, strong and compostable. In this way, it is possible for the Bio Iridescent Sequin to shimmer naturally without added chemicals. It is an entirely new way to approach finishes and colour within the fashion and textiles industry.
SEEN glass is embedded with small individual sequin-like shapes with a two sided nature; a metallic reflecting side in the front and on the back, a black, colour neutral side. This double sided effect creates opposing optical effects for interior and exterior spaces. Inside it appears as a simple black coloured design, while the outer side shimmers and shines.
The Colour Flooring Company
Okofloor is a new generation of ultra-green sheet flooring using high performance, ecological elastomers. It's made from 100% organic polyols extracted from castor or rapeseed oil. Not only functional, it´s surface has a unique patterning of subtle, irregular dots, which creates a clever and discreet iridescent finish.
A hybrid by design, Volar Bio is the latest material by Ultraleather® and the first of its kind. It incorporates renewable plant-based materials into the multiple layers of its proprietary construction. Proudly touting a 29% BioPreferred Program Label, Volar Bio was created with both functionality and sustainability in mind.
TheBreath is an innovative patented fabric by Anemotech designed to absorb and disaggregate harmful particles present in the air such as Formaldehyde, Benzene and VOCs. It offers a purification process that is completely passive, and which can help fight pollution caused by cars, appliances, furnishings, coatings, and industrial emissions.
Reef Design Lab
Reef Design Lab (RDL) has been developing 3D printed habitat designs for seawalls since 2014. Through RDL's research partnerships–such as those with Sydney Institute of Marine Science and Volvo– it has been pursuing the design of seawalls to maximize the colonization of native species, and greater biodiversity.
Products redesigned by Niaga are fully recyclable back into the same product. To allow for decoupling of different materials, they have invented a signature adhesive. Niaga produces carpets using only one or two materials. When face fibers from two different materials are desired, a recycler can “unclick” the adhesive to harvest two pure material streams.
Niaga Ecor Panel (NEP)
DSM-Niaga collaborated with ECOR to provide furniture makers with an alternative to MDF and particleboard made from recycled materials, free of VOCs, and fully recyclable. ECOR panels are made from cellulose fiber waste (paper, textile and agricultural waste) while Niaga's adhesive decouples on demand, allowing veneers and laminates to be removed from a product at the end of its life.
Criaterra develops Advanced Earth Technologies and fabricates sustainable products that are as strong as concrete, while embodying the vision of a circular economy. Criaterra’s 100% natural blend is achieved by a compacting process incorporating a variety of earths and vegetal fibers, creating rich colours that bring an organic sense and scent to every product.
That's Caffeine is a product by Atticus Durnell, made with used coffee grounds and biodegradable resin. This concept means to bring new applications to what is considered waste. Atticus has produced a range of tiles with a glossy polished finish, as well as a variation of textures achieved using mineral powders.
Wood Textiles by Tesler + Mendelovitch
Inspired by geometric structures and sustainable design practices, Tesler + Mendelovitch's research is focused on transforming straight end, stiff wood sheets into soft, bendable textiles. By combining wood textiles with smart construction techniques, Tesler + Mendelovitch create unique pieces such as their twisted furniture series, clutches, wall art, and interior wall panelling.
Goodfellow Ceramic Foams
Ceramic foams are made up of a lightweight three-dimensional network of struts or walls. The material behaves somehow similarly to porcelain or china, but is much stronger due to the porous, open structure created by the air bubbles, called windows, that are interspersed throughout.
Jordan Keaney is launching his London table; designed to show the complicated structure of the iconic city that inspired him. London is known for its vascular transportation system, represented in the ceramic foam centrepiece. Much like London, this stunning porous structure has varying avenues, meanders and hidden pockets of secrecy.
Sohma Furutate suggests a new way of product design, through an interchange of material properties between plastic and wood, in order to develop them as one material. Sohma uses a wooden mold to replicate its texture in the resin that was poured into it. Using this process, plastic is transformed into a material with distinct wood like characteristics.
Revive Innovations Ltd
RE-CD is a unique new material by designer Kieran Devlin, made from 100% waste compact discs (CDs), without resins and epoxies.The material is driven from a future waste perspective, with the knowledge that music CDs, alongside other discs, are playing a diminishing role within society. It is re-mouldable, highly manufacturable, and each piece has a unique, bespoke aesthetic.
Fruitleather Rotterdam has developed a new, eco-friendly process that converts leftover fruits into a durable, leather like material. By collecting waste, which is already present, there is no need for new resources in order to make this vegan leather alternative. Fruit leather is being developed for use in footwear and fashion accessories, and the interior and furnishing industry.
Ty Syml is a multi-disciplinary design studio, with materials at the heart of its practice. They work with Mycelium to develop materials which have minimal impact. Ty Syml has produced a lamp called SILO for the restaurant Silo in Brighton, as well as 3D tiles–both incredibly strong, lightweight, and compostable after use.
Created by Form Us With Love and Baux, this 100% bio-based panel called Acoustic Pulp combines the performance properties of sound absorption, safety and durability with sustainability and modern aesthetics. The material is made from sustainably harvested trees (contributing cellulose), non-GMO wheat bran (providing color), potato starch, plant derived wax and citrus fruit peels (as bio-binder).
Totomoxtle - Corn Husk Marquetry
Totomoxtle is a new material in a beautiful array of colours from the husks of heirloom corn. Once cut, ironed and glued onto a paper or textile backing, the husks are reassembled into designs using marquetry techniques, and applied to furniture or interior surfaces. Totomoxtle also strives to regenerate traditional agricultural practices in Mexico, creating a new craft that generates income for impoverished farmers.
Exhibitor Material Spotlight
Benchmark have chosen not to use plastic foam and have developed their upholstered furniture with entirely natural materials - coir, latex, sheep's wool, and recycled cotton. This overcomes significant environmental concerns surrounding the disposal of plastic form in landfill and eliminating the need for toxic, fire-retardant chemicals.
The ANS Living Wall System has been devised to enable architects, designers and planners to deliver projects that will improve the air quality and well-being for current and future generations. A living wall brings human benefits and biodiversity to urban landscapes in a visually appealing way.