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LIVING ARTEFACTS – Elvin Karana, Designing Living Artefacts

When organisms are still alive in the material outcome of a design process, and when the envisaged usage of these organisms is extended to the use time, livingness becomes a persistent material quality in design: the design outcome is a living artefact. How do we design living artefacts that are assimilated into our everyday life? Elvin Karana presents three principles—’Living Aesthetics’, ‘Mutualistic Care’, and ‘Habitabilities’—as fundamental loci of designing for livingness in bio-design.

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‘The dynamic relationship between humans and living artefacts will continue to evolve reciprocally with mutual care.’

Elvin Karana is Research Professor of Biobased Art and Design at the Avans and Associate Professor at the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, leading the research group Materializing Futures at TU/Delft. 

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Research Group: Biobased Art and Design

The research group Biobased Art and Design capitalises on the role of artistic practice in unlocking the unique potentials of living organisms for everyday materials and communicating these to a broader public. In doing so, the group aims to instigate and accelerate our widespread understanding, further development and usage of such materials. The group’s research approach encourages tangible interactions with the living organisms, such as algae, fungi, plants and bacteria, to explore and understand their unique qualities and constraints through diverse technical and creative methods taking artists, designers and scientists as equal and active partners in the material creation.

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