Katja Lonzeck is a designer based in Kassel, Germany, where she studies Product Design at the art academy. Her design focus is on material research and development, partially evolving to products with an artistic touch.Lateley she focuses on sustainable biological matter based on fungi and bacteria and examines how we could try to replace limited resources with these sustainable alternatives.
Soft / hard: slightly flexible
Shiny / matt: satin matt
Smells: subtile vinegary smell
Texture: slightly textured face, even back
fibre: cultivated fungi rhizoma
As the technique and outcome of the developed material are still relatively speculative the resulting material could be used just for its aesthetic motive.
Practical possible applications could make use of the fact that its produced as a flat material that warps just as its drying (flat pack shipping, the form occures when it dries amongst the consumers).
Its translucent feature predestines the material for applications in the light sector, for example as a lampshade.
I have been working with the rhizoma of a specific fungi species that usually can be found between bark and wood of fungi infested trunks.
In my conception the final material will be created by the cultivation of fungi that will grow its rhizoma in a controlled way directly into the flat bioplastics base that will also function as its nutrient medium.
After drying the material sheet the occuring deformation will bend in a specific direction according to the pattern of the initially grown rhizoma.