Atelier LVDW has designed Philia, an alternative for decorative plants. Philia which was presented at Dutch Design Week is a biodegradable art plant, made from garden waste and good bacteria.
It’s no surprise that plants are the most endangered species on the entire planet
Real or fake, we know that both are not very environmentally friendly. For example the plastic production for artificial plants and the high water and energy use in the production of real houseplants.
Besides that, many illegally obtained plants are in circulation worldwide, which are poached from the wild.
This has severe consequences for biodiversity and is where the inspiration to create the Philia collection was born.
Poaching of wild animals and plants is in the top 3 of the biggest threats to biodiversity worldwide.
It comes after habitat destruction but before climate change.
More than 30,000 plant species, such as cacti, succulents, orchids, and extremely rare conifers, are threatened with extinction. Poached plants are easily sold online to plant collectors.
A Step Forward
To draw attention to this problem, Atelier LVDW has developed a biomaterial made from botanical waste to develop “rare” artificial plants.
The studio found out that the stinging nettle could be a threat to our local biodiversity. Nettles grow well in nitrogen-rich soil. This soil contains a lot of nitrogen from exhaust gases and industries, resulting in an increase of nettles in places where they are not desirable. Especially in nature reserves, the stinging nettle disrupts other plants, again having negative consequences for biodiversity.
On the other hand, the nettle is a very healthy plant to eat or make tea, paper and textiles from. The studio choose to make a fermented liquid from the nettle adding good bacteria, this ensured the growth of a biomaterial called bacterial cellulose.
A strong biodegradable material with the key ingredients: stinging nettle, yeast, bacteria, probiotics & sugar.
Atelier LVDW wishes to promote more awareness of plants in our indoor and outdoor environments and hopes Philia is a step forward to demonstrate the possibilities of next-generation biomaterials.
More about the Studio
Atelier LVDW is the material design studio of Laura van de Wijdeven, based in Rotterdam The Netherlands.
Laura researches the future of sustainable and circular materials from a biophilic point of view. Her goal is to enrich interiors through organic waste streams and bio-based matter.
Subconsciously connecting its user with nature by implementing these new materials. The social connection between material, human and nature is intertwined in all her projects.
Her research finds its purpose in a variety of (interior) surfaces and objects. The work is an interplay of reproducible design, craft, experimental and unique artworks. All products are handmade by Laura in her atelier in Rotterdam.
Find out more of Atelier’s LVDW creative and sustainable collections here
To read more about the unique Arts and Crafts projects we are inspired by click here
Growing artificial rare plants is supported by the Creative Industry fund NL.
Images courtesy of Atelier LVDW