The future of furniture might also be the future of food. Or is that the other way around? Designers are increasingly turning to microalgae, which is effectively a “liquid plant,” because it can be suspended in fluid and utilized as a design material as well as harnessed for its food production qualities.
The Living Things installation is one such project, a partnership between architectural designer Jacob Douenias and industrial designer Ethan Frier, for the express purpose of creating furniture that, well, creates. In this case, the result is photosynthetic furniture filled with tiny, edible bacteria that also function as luminous light sources.
The bright green microalgae is already a popular nutritional supplement sold in health food stores, and it’s often touted as a superfood. As much as half of its weight is comprised of protein, making it a super-efficient food source.