Much of the so-called ‘nature’ in our lives has taken on an artificial authenticity. Engineered tomatoes are redder, rounder, and larger than the ones from our gardens. We have made fluorescent fish, featherless birds, and botanical gardens that contain species from every corner of the globe. Human design has made nature hypernatural. Hypernature is an exaggerated simulation of a nature that never existed. It’s better than the real thing: a little bit prettier, slicker and safer than the old kind. Hypernature is culture in disguise.
More hypernatural designer-fruit. What do you get when you cross a strawberry and a pineapple? A pineberry, of course. Some seven years ago the pineberry was taken from its native South America and grown commercially in glasshouses by Dutch company VitalBerry BV. Today pineberries are available in supermarkets throughout Europe…
After making the successful and popular movie Avatar (2009), James Cameron started the Avatar Home Tree Initiative. This initiative consists of building “Avatar” forests on 17 places on Earth in collaboration with local organizations. Among these places are the USA, Sweden, Brazil, Spain, The Netherlands and the UK. Totally there…
Human design brings us ‘natural’ experiences that could not exist without the human hand, but can be appreciated nevertheless. Perhaps we are intuitively faked to believe rainbow-dyed flowers are evolutionary more advanced than the original version? Nature never goes out of style, yet it can easily be turned into kitsch.…
Do you happen to know the Dutch Tomatoes? They look like Ferrari’s and taste like shit. They are redder, rounder, larger, and maybe even healthier than the ones from our gardens. They are more natural than natural: Hypernatural. They are Dutch Design. You can find them in a supermarket nearby.…
We all know the cellphone masts disguised as trees, created in an attempt to blend technology within the ‘natural’ landscape. Now Taiwanese scientists have created trees that could function as streetlights. They infused the leaves of Bacopa Caroliniana with gold nanoparticles which causes the chlorophyll to produce a reddish luminescence.…
In Animatus, Hyungkoo Lee reconstructs the skeletal and muscular anatomy of Wile E. Coyote
N is for Nature
There are people who think what makes a good wine comes from nature – factors like rain and soil and temperature. Then there are those who think it’s a matter of second nature – of picking and fermenting and ageing. But these days, there’s a whole new world of wine making technology – and a whole new argument as to what is “natural” and what is not.…Read more
'It is only when second nature develops that nature appears as a concept. Once the techniques are in place for making nature into a resource, for trapping or taming it, an appreciation arises for nature in its raw state'
Pimp My Planet
After the worldwide acceptance of plastic surgery, it was time to subject our worldly possessions and digital identities to an aesthetic and/or functional upgrade. Everything can be pimped. Even our own planet.
With his speculative ‘acoustic garden’ David Benqué tries to explore our cultural and aesthetic relationship to nature. He states that the current debate around Genetic Engineering is centred around subjects like food and healthcare but that the altering of nature is no new development.…Read more
Branded Butterfly Wings
“A glowing green logo drawn by scientists on the wing of a genetically altered butterfly could herald the day that the insects are adorned with adverts and slogans. A team at the University at Buffalo that developed the world’s first genetically modified butterfly has now adapted the work to create the fluorescent marking on the wings of the insect to demonstrate an innovative tool that will make it easier to find out what genes do, in this case those that play a role in making the patterns on wings, from stripes to eye spots.”
After reading this at Telegraph, I imagined something like the sporty butterfly picture above: Papilio Nike-Ulysses.…Read more
Genetically Modified Salmon moves to Kitchen Table
The US Food and Drug Administration is considering whether to approve the first genetically engineered animal that people would eat — salmon that can grow at twice the normal rate.
The salmon was developed by a company called AquaBounty Technologies.…Read more