Bio talk

Stella Peng
First-Year, Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design


Modeling and 3D printing


The exploration and study of biodiversity in nature has been going on for thousands of years, and it is not difficult to find the similarities and differences, order and chaos in this exploration process. This project visualizes this phenomenon in the universe by means of product/IP design, and also explored the future direction of human beings for the protection of biodiversity.

In a world where humans are a huge influence, attitudes towards bacteria and fungi are often negative. Are organisms that are harmful to humans harmful to the planet? If not, can we find a way to live in harmony with all natural organisms? These are the questions plaguing me.

Inspired by similar figures that stumbled across (Hexagon, Vein, and Lichtenberg Figures), all similarities and diversity that emerge in this universe are intriguing, especially in the age of overproduction. “Science is beautiful when it makes simple explanations of phenomena or connections between different observations.” It is interesting to reflect this philosophy through product design, including character sketching, modeling and 3D printing.

So that I explored the close link between the existence of humans and the natural, and how the two influence one another that. I tried to observe the growth pattern of slime molds at 77 degrees Fahrenheit and high humidity, also the changing patterns over ten days to create a sketch of the product. As for the modeling process, I use rhinos to simulate the growth process of the mold. The length, diameter, and density are set by controlling variables. After spraying with organic solution, and food residues, the model produced a large number of mycelium after 3 days. The mycelium is often white, brown, gray, or brightly colored. Under suitable temperature, humidity, and other conditions, the mold growth temperature is about 25-30 ℃, and the relative humidity is 80%-90%. The hyphae gradually attach and grow on the diffused structure, until finally, the mold appears to cover the entire model.

The resulting works have a visualized appearance so I consider this piece as a form of communication, connecting two fields: art and science, as I seek to understand the environment and to make visible the point of intersection between.