It started with a chair but like roots of a tree the possibilities run far further and deeper than this – someday we could be growing architecture this way as well.
Studio Eric Klarenbeek (‘designer of the unusual’) produced the Mycelium Chair, which uses straw as a 3d-printed growth medium and bio-plastic to contain the shape while mycelium fills out the form and provides the structural strength for the seat.
Klarenbeek worked with specialists at the University of Wageningen on this project. The mushrooms sprouting out from it are a secondary effect, a sort of accidental decor growing out from the main structure and a way to tell the story of its production.
“Designer Eric Klarenbeek interest is combining materials in unexpected ways. Klarenbeek is exploring ways of making 3D prints of living organisms, such as mycelium, the threadlike network in fungi. He uses experimental raw materials for printing material: organic substrate for mushroom growing and bioplastics.”
“Working with scientists, Klarenbeek has printed a chair from straw, with a thin coating of bioplastic. Once it is mature it should be strong enough to support a person. The chair is a metaphor for what can be achieved with materials and production methods. “