Presented during the Dutch Design Week by the Berlin-based studio Blond & Bieber, Algaemy is a scientific project investigating the aesthetic potential of micro algae in a creative context – mostly regarded as weeds in Europe and undiscovered. The textile designer Essi Johanna Glomb and product designer Rasa Weber explore its wide diversity of functions, including nutrition, energy and oil production, filtering qualities and CO2 absorption. This great interest led them into generating a design laboratory where they investigate ways of using micro algae as a pigment in the textile printing industry.
The process is straightforward yet very complex. The algae is grown in glass vessels, for the cells to photosynthesis, it is necessary for someone to blow into the vessels to provide carbon dioxide – enhancing the growth. Next, the pigment is extracted for printing, filtered through textile to generate a fast growing eco-friendly and healthy pigment paste.
The designers are seeking 100% non-toxic textiles dyes to use as an alternate solution to our current nature harming dyes. Future plans involve carrying on the research of algae-based dyes and potentially bringing products made using the dyes into the market. Working on a small capsule collection may also be a doable idea.