Jennifer: Last weekend I joined hundreds of excited children and their parents at the Perth Royal Show. I was there to present the Science Of Slime, and had a fabulous time making goo all day long. In between slime shows, I did manage to slip in a visit to the exhibit pavilions. It was here that I came across the work of artist Donna Franklin.
Donna’s Micro ‘be’ Fermented Fashion- a project that Lisa blogged about back in 2007- was on show in the Grand Pavilion. Micro ‘be’ is the world’s first dress made from the bacterial ferment of wine. The alcohol is converted to acetic acid (vinegar), and the by-product of this reaction is microfibrous cellulose (cotton).
“Fibre Reactive” also caught my eye; a dress constructed from a living fungus that “grows with the wearer”. The fungus changes from white to orange over time, and interestingly, is the same fungus that breaks down the bacteria constituting the Micro ‘be’ wine dress.
Donna’s work was featured at the Technothreads Exhibition at Dublin’s Science Gallery in April 2008. Along with the fungus and wine dresses, she also exhibited a Guinness garment, which smells, according to the artist, “a bit like the day after the night before”.
SymbioticA’s “Victimless Leather”, a semi-living exhibit constructed using connective tissue from mice, was also featured at the Technothreads Exhibition.