Exclusive view of the Living Brick

Issue date: 14 October 2016

09.30-14.30 h Friday 14 October 2016, Hotel Carlton on the Grand Canal, Santa Croce 578, 30135 – Venezia.

Members of the press are invited to an exclusive preview of a prototype 'Living Brick' which could transform the way we live and work.

The blocks, which contain a microbial fuel cell filled with natural -potentially programmable- microorganisms, which will act as a digestive system for buildings, are being designed as part of the €3.2m LIAR (Living Architecture) project.

The 'smart' bricks will extract resources from sunlight, waste water and air. The bricks are able to fit together and create 'bioreactor walls' which could then be incorporated in housing, public buildings and office spaces.

Project co-ordinator Rachel Armstrong from Newcastle University, UK, said: “We are very excited to be able to show off the first prototype of the living brick. There is so much potential in this project to change the way we think about how we recycle the waste form our home and what the places we live in can do.

“For so long buildings and the materials used to build them have been inert structures. Our work is looking at the materials we use to build our homes, our offices, and make them come alive and work for us in a way which benefits us and the environment.”

The bricks are being created by experts at the Centre for BioEnergy at Bristol Robotics Laboratory (BRL)at the University of the West of England (UWE), Bristol, UK. Professor Ioannis Ieropoulos….said: “The MFC is a technology we have been developing for practical implementation, over a number of years, and it is fantastic that this project is giving us the opportunity to integrate the technology with the building-blocks of our homes and work-places. We are surrounded by examples of structures, materials and systems with multiple functionalities and this is a first step towards making the wall structures surrounding us, multi-functional”.

Professor Armstrong will host the launch event on Friday 14 October. Journalists will be able journalists an opportunity to directly observe the working brick and ask questions about its development and longer-term applications.

A short round table of experts including Professor Ioannis Ieropoulos from UWE and Juan Nogales from the Spanish National Research Council, will introduce the key technological advances.

Guest experts will also be commenting on the potential impact and applications of the technology. Massimo Lepore, partner/senior architect of Studio TAMassociati, an Italian team of architects based in Venice since 1996, which specialises in sustainable architecture and humanitarian projects, will respond to the development of a working living brick.

Rolf Hughes, Professor of Artistic Research at the Stockholm University of the Arts, a prose poet, essayist, epistemologist and researcher of innovative forms of artistic and trans disciplinary practices over more than twenty years, will speak on the broader academic and cultural relevance of this research.

In addition to the working brick, a ceramic model will be exhibited, which has been developed by LIQUIFER Systems Group, as a discussion point for the potential impact that future living bricks may have for architecture, design, ceramics and the arts.

If you would like to attend, please contact: Anna Simion

Email: info@explora-biotech.com

Phone: +39 06 62 28 3945

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