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Material Incubator

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Speculative Storytelling with Living Materials

Workshop by Sarah Lugthart and Hazal Ertürkan


This workshop was part of the SIA GoCi Matchmaking programme and was financially supported by SIA.

This workshop aims to broaden the perspective of biodesigners and stimulate design ideation with living materials (e.g. bacteria- and algae-based materials) based on Speculative Storytelling with Living Materials and recent research on designing with living materials.

Workshop Miraculous Futures with Living Materials, at Material Incubator, in 2021, supported by GoCi.

Card deck

Building on the Miraculous Futures card deck, which is a tool developed by Klasien van de Zandschulp and Ashley Baccus-Clark for designing speculative stories, a special living materials edition of this card deck was designed based on the research “Living Material Vocabulary” (Erturkan, Karana, Mugge, 2021, [under review]) to discuss possible futures for living with living materials. The card deck helps to understand what living materials are, by introducing their qualities, and stimulates the imagination to speculate on radically different futures with the integration of living materials. During the workshop, this card deck is used to spark ideas and generate concepts. World-building exercises and templates help to develop these ideas further. The workshop results in a speculative story (a scene or situation) that can take place in the world that is created.