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Symbiocene Living: PLP Labs Exhibit Innovative Mycelium Blocks in London

By PLP Architecture
Jun 6, '23 10:22 AM EST
Photography: George Fielding
Photography: George Fielding

PLP Labs have launched Symbiocene Living, an installation for Clerkenwell Design Week made from mycelium modular blocks, which demonstrates a possible future in which civilization and nature entertain a positive symbiotic relationship.

PLP Labs' exhibit comprises of bio-based sculptures, crafted from hybrid blocks composed of mycelium and 3D printed wood structures. 84 blocks, resembling watermelons in size, are arranged to form abstract seating, planters, a table, partitions and captivating spatial formations. Visitors are encouraged to interact and explore these mycelium structures, gaining firsthand experience of the symbiotic relationship between humans and fungi.

Mycelium, the intricate root-like network of fungi, holds immense potential in the development of the Symbiocene, a future era where humans and nature actively collaborate to create a better world. Recognising the pivotal role of architects and urban designers in shaping this transformative period, PLP Labs has conducted an extensive year-long experiment to explore the structural capabilities and architectural potential of mycelium bio-composites.

The study revealed mycelium to be a versatile material suitable for various architectural applications. Unlike conventional materials like concrete and steel, mycelium bio-composites are renewable, biodegradable, and have minimal environmental impact. Additionally, they boast lightweight properties, excellent insulation characteristics, and high fire resistance. PLP Labs successfully combined engineering ingenuity with the natural attributes of fungi, employing the fusion of mycelium and 3D printed wood shells to create a myriad of precisely moulded configurations.

Full information on further engagement, as well as more information on the research and background information of mycelium blocks and the Symbiocene can be found here:

Mycelium Research by PLP Labs