living things




‘Living Things’ is an installation that explores the « symbiosis between human beings and microorganisms externalized and celebrated in the built environment » through photosynthetic furniture.


Micro algae present a unique opportunity to designers. Since they lack superstructure and are found in liquids, becoming a ‘liquid plant’, they become a living material which can be integrated symbiotically into the architectural environment. The home of the future could see algae as a sustainable solution for the increasing human-generated pollution and waste.


« The plasticity of this living material allows us to create living structures. These living structures recycle light, heat, and carbon dioxide from buildings and their inhabitants into rich green biomass which can be consumed as sustenance, used as agricultural fertilizer, or converted to biofuel. This installation reveals the phenomenological qualities of the highly beneficial micro-algae and challenges visitors to consider what the future of the domestic environment may become in the context of the precarious agricultural and energy needs of a ballooning population.

The three vignettes; a living room, a dining room, and a kitchen/control center each espouse a different character, and the living vessels function differently in each space ».

Living Things is now installed in the Mattress Factory, Museum of Contemporary Art in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania until March 27, 2016.


Lydia Janis Caldana

Photos courtesy of the Mattress Factory – photos Tom Little & LLC


Lydia Janis Caldana is a trend forecaster with a creative background and both eyes on the future. Amazed by the opportunities new technologies bring at an exponential rate, she uses her abilities to predict movements and change to help companies, governments and disrupters be in charge of a more sustainable, inspiring and tech-solutioned world. Lydia keeps a blog about technology, is the LatAm correspondent for The Future Is Already Here, a think tank for a better world, and co-curates Ello’s official community about tech, culture and innovation, Ello Future.