Sunday, March 18, 2012

Basic Instinct 2.0

Modern day lifestyle and agriculture has come a long way. It has advanced so fast that our biological body has not been able to catch-up. This became apparent to me when I was standing exactly in-between two fields; one modern wheat; full and smooth like velvet and one spelt (an ancient grain) uneven and weedy. The keeper of the spelt lot a retired engineer had become hobby-miller, explained to me; wheat has been manipulated to meat modern manufacturing needs, spelt is unspoiled and therefore much easier to digest. Not only that but it naturally contains a whole lot more of health benefits too. (ref)
experimental ecologic fields (of spelt) at Dybbøl Banke

What we often call a food allergy is in ¾ of the cases more likely a digestive problem. Our biological body is still in stone-age mode. Our DNA, genes and enzymes do not adjust that quickly, this puts many food-allergies into a different light.
For example milk. ¾ of people both Western and Asian lose their ability to digest lactose after infant years, yet we keep drinking/consuming dairy products and in parallel develop lifestyle diseases like allergies and intolerances.
Also modern man is having obvious problems fitting his eating habits to the modern lifestyle habits. We are over-eating, our instinct tells us to crave fat, salt and sugar, whenever we go into a traditional (deprivation) diet, the body goes into a so-called survival mode; that is it conserves it’s depots, and that makes it very difficult to burn fat and lose weight.
Stone-age mode also impacts the brain; we have a so-called warrior gene that can have significant impact on how a person reacts in a stress situation. Appx. 1/3 of men has this gene and takes more risk and is more likely to react in an aggressive manner. We like to think that it is possible to teach people to change their behavior, but if your genes are not made for it, then obviously training will be less impactful. In many instances our brain still makes decision in hunter-fashion, to survive.

When we will be able to de-code our DNA’s we will have a much more objective, deep and comprehensive understanding of our biological selves, and we will be able to diagnose and intervene in a much more targeted manner. At CES in Las vegas Ion Torrent Systems launched the Proton Ion Sequencer. The table-top like printer promises to read a humans DNA in one day for 750 euro. 
Proton Ion Sequencer
Proton Ion Sequencer

This will open completely new possibilities for understanding our psychological disorders and making effective plans for how to treat or deal with these as well as composing targeted effective healthy diets. Maybe finally Nurture can now get perfectly tuned to Nature.

This article was published in edited form in Philips Design New Value News Design Trends column in March 2012.

Friday, March 2, 2012

colour contamination

Mold and stains where always dreaded signs of decomposition, decay and filth. Something to be ashamed of. But now artists and designers are starting to celebrate these imperfections, they recreate them and shape them through processes of creative alchemy, where the random act of something that resembles the living organism of bacteria is replicated.

The dip-bag by Creatuals and Mycaro is trying to capture the emotion of a moment and capture it into the random color contamination that happens when a white piece of cloth is dipped into pigments.
Dip-bag by Creatuals and Mycaro

Dip-bag by Creatuals and Mycaro

Pop-up store for Dip-bag by Creatuals and Mycaro

Also Lizan Freijsen is fascinated by the beauty of the mold and stains, it has been central to her artistic work for many years. Recently she has turned this into carpets of lichen that we could all have on the floor in our living-room. It looks so organic that you easily start to imagine that it would still be growing once installed in your living-room.

Lizan Freisen Korstmos carpet @ Objekt Rotterdam

Lizan Freisen Korstmos carpet @ Objekt Rotterdam

In this techno-crafted self-painting dress by Anouk Wipdrecht, it is as if a uncontrolled lab is letting it's liquids go over the dress, contaminating it with color. the moving liquids pigments taints the dress with a sensual, growing, organic pattern.
self-painting dress by Anouk Wipdrecht

self-painting dress by Anouk Wipdrecht

even hair now gets contaminated by color, just look at Lady Gaga's dip-colored hair
(Grammy awards 2010)
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The chromatic dissolving or fading from one color to another is now also entering interior design. The contamination has become gradations or fadings but still has a flavor of poison in it due to the stingy fluo.
The collection by Scholtens and Baaijings for Pastoe presented at IMM

Production Woontrend and EH&I
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