Forward To Nature: How Blurring Species Boundaries Might Help Us Go Beyond Our Conception Of The Vegetal World
What if the physical body could progressively merge with the vegetal world? What happens if we consider our body not as an independent set of organ, but as an organism constantly evolving toward a symbiosis with plants?
Let's dive into new ways to use the shaping powers of nature.
Botanical Bodies, a speculative design scenario investigates the possibility of using plants as a raw material for the creation of human-compatible organs. Scientific progress in understanding complex living organisms has made it possible to engineer life, and the hybridization of species has become a designed process. This project explores how plant-human hybridization might become a necessity for preserving ecosystems endangered by human activity.
Whereas the post-human is usually imagined as a blend of the organic and the digital, human and technology, the possibility for humans to merge with vegetal life is becoming a reality in today's scientific landscape. What if the human of the future becomes more plant than robot, more connected with the environment rather than taking advantage of it, more prone to merging with other life forms rather than seeking to stand out?
New possibilities to enhance the human body are being researched.
Progress in the field of synthetic biology (design and construction of new biological entities) makes it possible to imagine new ways of modifying the human body. Previously overlooked organisms, ranging from bacteria to plants, can now be engineered to gain new functions and serve designed purposes.
The similarities in structure between human organs and plants has become a focus for scientists.
Speculating about the possibility of modifying the human body with vegetal matter raises all kinds of questions concerning the ways we relate to our bodies, the environment, and what it means to be human.
Individualizing our bodies from our environment has created a separation between living beings, where to be human is to demonstrate difference, where taking advantage of other species rather than collaborating with them has become the norm.
If we understand ourselves as relative to other beings, alternatively we can perceive ourselves as part of a broad, interconnected network of living things, rather than as individuals defined by our seemingly unique characteristics. So, could we engage in a new relationship with the vegetal world by merging with it?
From a design perspective, the merging of the human and vegetal worlds may offer new opportunities for sustainable practices. For example, we can imagine a future where clothing is made from living organisms, such as bacteria or plants, that can grow and evolve with the wearer. This could potentially reduce the need for traditional textile production, which is often associated with environmental harm.
In addition, the merging of the human and vegetal worlds may challenge our traditional notions of beauty and fashion. As we become more closely integrated with the natural world, our ideas of what is aesthetically pleasing may shift. Designers may need to re-think their approaches to fashion and design, taking into account this new relationship between humans and the vegetal world.
Overall, the merging of the human and vegetal worlds has the potential to revolutionize not just our bodies, but also the way we think about fashion and design. As we continue to explore new ways of modifying the human body, we, at PUBLIC SERV-CE are here for this new era of creativity and innovation.