___ The Playing Life exhibition explores the emerging field of creating and working with living materials as a medium for the development of innovative art & design projects. Playing Life features a combination of recent developments in biotechnology, interspersed with future concepts and projects that are influenced by craft. During two Playing Life – Biotalk Nights speakers will reflect on their field of expertise in collaboration and at Mediamatic. Playing Life opened on Friday 25 September in Transnatural gallery in Amsterdam and travelled to Eindhoven for the Dutch Design Week in October with an extended version of the exhibition.

We have landed in an engineered era through extensive, modern biotechnological capabilities. Technology allows us to build with DNA; Bovine meat can already be grown in the lab, as an alternative for production of meat for market consumption. Modified bacteria can grow materials such as pearls. Would it be possible to bio-print an organ that can defibrillate the human heart when it recognises fibrillation (a heart attack) in the near future ?

The interest in living materials doesn’t merely focus on the manipulation of DNA – which can only be done in advanced bio-labs. Beyond the scientific labs, all kinds of experiments are being performed using new application methods of living materials; fish skins are a major part of fishing waste, but if treated according to an old tanning technique, they are found to have the same qualities as cowhideor pigskin. The possibility of upscaling to become an industrial product is real. Bacteria and fungi together are capable of cleaning extremely polluted soil, and fungi alone can produce ink and insulation materials.

The bio-economy isn’t just a matter of replacing mineral resources with organic materials, it has advanced far beyond. There is a burgeoning creative sector built around bio-materials. Playing Life exhibits various recent developments in this fascinating sphere.

Projects and participants:
Circumventive organs / Agatha Haines (UK) ,
 Bistro in Vitro / Next Nature (NL) ,
 Ghost in the Machine / Ted Lawson (US) 
, Posterus textilus  / Tamara Hoogeweegen (NL) , Re-Sea-Me  / Nienke Hoogvliet (NL) , 
Fungi fest / Tessa Kuipers (NL) ,
 Playful Self / Alex Rothera & James Krahe (US)

++ Dutch Design Week participants:
One Luminous dot / Teresa van Dongen (NL) , Algae Graphs / Lia Giraud (FR) , Peter Gentenaar (NL) , Christiaan Lieverse (NL) 

Transnatural Workspace
Dates: 26 Sept. – 15 Apr.
Open: Tue. – Fri., 10.00h – 17.00h / Sat. 13.00h – 17.00h.
Address: Lijnbaansgracht 148a Bg Amsterdam

Dutch Design Week 
Dates: 17 – 25 Oct. 
Address: Veemgebouw STRP-S, Torenallee 80

Playing Life – Biotalk & demo’s – :  Fri. 11 December18 March at Mediamatic

More information on workshops RE-SEA ME (tanning fish skin)

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Supported by:

Creative Industy fundAmsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst,VSBfonds, Hybrid House Fonds, Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds