From 27 February to 24 May the Roca London Gallery will host an exhibition curated by Barcelona-based industrial design and architecture studio Estudi Ramon Folch (ERF) that demonstrates the power of biomimicry, a word of Greek origin that refers to the copying, emulating and imitating of nature in all its forms and functions.
Divided into three categories – Form, Function and Future – the Designs by Mother Nature exhibition considers the many solutions that nature offers designs, architects and engineers.
For instance, how the shape of a Mallard’s beak influenced the aerodynamic shape of a high-speed train and how human skin inspired the exterior of the LG GG-Flex mobile phone concept.
“Humanity is facing major challenges in improving the quality of life for a growing number of people. Understanding how nature works and taking advantage of its ancient wisdom is an excellent basis for effective design,” explains Frederic Ximeno from ERF, who is co-curating the exhibition with two colleagues together with London-based materials expert, Chris Lefteri.
Some of the exhibits on display that demonstrate the plethora of designs that have been inspired by nature include Velcro, which was discovered by George de Metral when he noticed the natural hook system of the burdock thistle when it clung to his dog’s coat.
Another is Norman Foster’s Gherkin in London, which was inspired by the Venus Flower Basket Sponge, a fibrous latticework that helps to disperse stresses on the organism in various directions.
As well as current designs, the exhibition also considers what the future will bring with a selection of potential design ideas, such as the concept of light-producing plants grown from seed that could potentially eliminate the need for electric lighting.
Designed by world-renowned FAT Architecture, the exhibition layout is also influenced by the concept of biomimicry and uses the mathematical Fibonnaci sequence as a basis for the framework. The aim is to provide a dynamic and striking spatial experience through which visitors move.
“Throughout the exhibition visitors can see commercial, everyday products inspired by nature and understand how resourceful it is to draw on nature to generate design solutions that are attractive, functional, efficient and often more sustainable. We hope that visitors enjoy the experience,” concludes Ximeno.