Fara Peluso conducting an algae workshop at State studio

BITS – Living Canvas at STATE Studio

In ALL, BITS by Alice Fleerackers

Fara Peluso literally makes canvas come to life. For the past few months, the Berlin-based artist and designer has been collaborating with Solaga—a startup specializing in the use of algae for clean air, energy, and a range of sustainable systems—to create a living, breathing wall installation out of algae biofilm. Mounted within a quadratic glass frame, this stunning experimental work grows and breathes in real time. By cultivating an energy generating algae biofilms before viewers’ eyes, the project offers a fresh look at algae—our main oxygen producers on earth—and the innovative biotechnologies that may soon define our future.

Peluso’s creation can be seen at Living Canvas, on view until April 15, 2019 at the STATE Studio in Berlin. The exhibition is complemented by a public workshop series titled Algature, which introduces participants to spirulina algae and invites them to play with their own speculative design ideas. The next Algature workshop takes place on March 12 at the STATE Studio’s “DIY biology laboratory.”

For those who can’t make it to the STATE Studio in person, we’re sharing a taste of Peluso’s stunning work and the fascinating process behind it:

Artist Fara Peluso in action
Fara Pelusa in action – photo by Anne Freitag
A tray of algae culture
Photo by Anne Freitag
Large beakers of mysterious green algae culture, with artist Fara Pelusa
Photo by Anne Freitag
A glowing circle of green algae in a glass panel
Photo by Anne Freitag
A table full of beakers, ready for the Algature workshop series
The scene is set at the Algaculture workshop series – photo by Anne Freitag
Algature workshop participants experiment with spirulina algae
Algature workshop participants experiment with spirulina algae – photo by Anne Freitag
Fara Pelusa walks participants through some of the basics at an Algacture workshop
Fara Pelusa walks participants through some of the basics at an Algacture workshop – photo by Anne Freitag

For more information about Living Canvas or the Algature workshop series, visit the STATE Studio’s website or follow them on Instagram at @statestudiobln.

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About the Author

Alice Fleerackers

Alice is a freelance writer, a researcher at the ScholCommLab, and an editor at the Art the Science blog. With degrees in both psychology and publishing, she is fascinated by the confluence of science and story, and is passionate about bringing research into everyday life. As a journalist, she’s had the pleasure of interviewing media specialists, psychotherapists, anthropologists, and many others on everything from the psychology of cat videos to the “science” of astrology. In her spare time, she rides her bike, dabbles in spoon carving, and—yes—occasionally, reads her horoscope. Twitter: @FleerackersA