Mycotecture Brick Wall

Philip Ross (US)

Mycotecture bricks are bricks that are grown out of a living fungus. The fungus digests and binds together smaller pieces of organic materials into a tightly bound structure. Though incredibly strong and durable, fungal materials can readily be broken down with a range of benign processes and incorporated back into the world.

Fungal materials can be grown into the form of walls, arches, columns and other building components. They can also be grown with tunable qualities similar to plastics. They can be cut and machined like many other composites or rigid foams, but it is better to imagine the fungal tissue as a goo that will infiltrate, permeate and bind whatever it comes in contact with and can digest (it cannot digest humans).

Like all organisms, fungi are very sensitive to their surroundings, and by altering subtle factors it is possible to make their tissue express a range of desirable physical characteristics. Fungal tissue can quickly be amplified to an enormous volume if provided with the appropriate nutrients and environmental factors.

PROFILE

Philip Ross is an artist, inventor, and scholar whose research is focused on biomaterial design and life support technologies. Philip’s innovations in engineering are globally recognised as foundational to the invention of mycotecture, the practice of building with fungal mycelium. He is a co-founder of MycoWorks and a thought leader on biomimicry. In 2013, his mycelium-based furniture won Ars Electronica’s Award of Distinction for Hybrid Art. In 2014, Philip was invited to Stanford University’s Department of Bioengineering as a Visiting Scholar where he has been pursuing research on fungal tissue development. In 2015, he joined the BioBricks Foundation as a Technical Lead on a project called The Bionet, which is an early projection towards the internet of biological things.

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