Difference between revisions of "DIY or DYE - BadLab project"

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Pattern Creation
Pattern Creation
== Gallery ==*[[:File:b900f7e2-416b-4b77-945f-9bb3670f4e08.JPG]]
== Gallery ==*

Revision as of 02:24, 20 May 2019

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Bad Lab - DIY or Dye

On the occasion of BIG and at the invitation of VOLUMES, Lisa Biedlingmaier, Anne-Laure Franchette, Maya Minder propose to explore the metaphor of the "weed" and to set up a laboratory of ideas and practices entitled "BAD LAB".

Starting from the expression "bad weeds" and the black list of invasive and undesirable species in Switzerland, we wondered what could be a bad plant. "Good" and "Bad" are terms the semantics used to describe these species and the actions to be taken against them for controlling and at best eradicating them reflect a fear of invasion. Our project is to create a laboratory of ideas and practices around the metaphor of the "bad weed" as an illustration of the invisible and the resurgence. We find it particularly interesting to use a greenhouse, this as a tool for protection used in the production of useful plants and as a symbol of the enormous industry of agriculture. We hope the knowledge we manage to generate by watching a small part of the planetary garden can give us a better insight into the structures of a larger system. What is it that a "Bad Lab" compared to a scientific laboratory? He is never satisfied with the results. We are less interested in chemical reactions than in the complex relationships between society and our environment. As Donna Haraway says in her book "Staying with the trouble", new speculative stories are what we need to tackle the huge environmental problems of the planet.

This "BAD LAB" will consist of plant arrangements, a library, an open kitchen and open lab, facilities sculptural, sound performances and series of workshops (printing and cooking with plants). This living device will be a place of exchange and experimentation that will look like an alternative florist, a exhibition space, a library, an organic stall, a creative leisure workshop. We will sell food and drinks made according to ancient recipes. Also, if our project is retained, we make additional grant requests to invite additional partners such as Gaudilabs of Lucerne and Lifepatch from Indonesia. In the idea of ​​organizing workshops on the microscopic analysis of seeds, on the measuring their photosynthesis capacity, or to carry out chlorophyll extractions to be used as a pigment for printing on fabric or paper. Our last collective project took place at the Kunstverein Wagenhalle in Stuttgart where we realized in the framework of "Humus Sapiens" series of workshops and facilities.


BadLab DIY or DIE Is an transdisciplinary workshop led by Corinna Mattner and Maya Minder on the topic of coloring fabrics with wild herbs and bacteria, which takes place in the context of the exhibition UNFINISHED BUSINESS at Sattelkammer, Bern.

We will approach the art of dyeing by means of DIYbio methods and old knowledge about plantdye and natural coloring. We use plants, bacteria and ferments directly to dye fabrics and create uncontrolled design and patterns. In the framework of the theme of the exhibition „unfinished business“ the aspect of empowerment by DIY is celebrated threw the moment of liberation - Just do it! Embroidery hoops stand as a symbol of the time we save, which we take as free time by growing beyond the collective stick tradition of manual work, no longer embroidering the fabric with rules and slogans, but use nature itself, its signs leaves to create traces of stories.

This workshop is a lot about the playful approach of learning and unlearning threw female and sensory and experimental perception. We try not to follow strict protocols and fix applied methods, but rather dig into the diversity that nature offers of untoxic plants and microbes, rewriting strings of (His)stories in search for new practice in old hidden eastern and western history, when human capability of understanding and perceiving the world threw science were closer linked together.

Lab Equipment:

List of Lab Equipment needed made by Tribe Against Machine (http://tribe-against-machine.org/)


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Find more sources and information on:

Fabricademy: https://class.textile-academy.org/classes/week04/#lecture-notes

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/bacterialdye/

Vienna Textile Lab: https://www.viennatextilelab.at/about-us/

Textilelab Amsterdam https://waag.org/en/project/textilelab-amsterdam

Living Colour: https://livingcolour.eu/experiments/

Pili.bio - Color made in microbes designed by humans https://www.pili.bio/

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History from Natural to Synthetic Dyes

There are two types of dyes. Natural, those come from animal or plant sources and synthetic, those that are manmade. If you were trying to dye clothing before synthetic dyes were discovered in 1856, you would have had to use natural dyes. Some of the most known are the animal dyes tyrian purple and cochineal and the plant dyes madder and indigo or saffflower in Europe. Tyrian purple was one of the moste desired natural dyes made of snails. As legend has it, a sheep dog belonging to Herules was walking along the beach in Tyre. He bi into a small mollusk which turned his mouth the color of coagulated blood. This became known as royal or tyrian purple. It brought great prosperity to Tyre around 1500 BC and for centuries it was the most expensive animal dye money could buy, worn by Cesaer, Cleopatra and entire european king houses. Corchineal is a crimson dye made from cactus insects. It was introduced to Europe from Mexico by the Spanish sea voyagers. It was used as cloth dye, artists’ pigment, and much later as a food dye. This is also required a huge seasonal harvest seeing as 17’000 dried insects produced a single ounce of dye. Plant dyes are generally cheaper and in greater supply. The most common being madder red and indigo blue. Madder came from the roots of 35 species of plants found in Europe and Asia. It has been found in the cloth of mummies and was the first dye to be used as camouflage.

Animal Fibers

Animal Fibers are natural fibers that consist largely of particular proteins. Instances are silk, hair and fur (including wool) and feathers. Wool Silk Hair Feather

Plant-derived vegetable fibres

The principal chemical component of vegetable fibers is cellulose, with varying amounts of lignin and hemicelluloses also usually present; thus the fibers are also referred to as cellulosic or lignocellulosic. Cotton Linen Ramie Hemp Raffia Jute

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On Natural Dye and sources:

Why not research how to dye easter eggs https://www.livona.de/natuerlich-ostereier-faerben-mit-pflanzen-und-gewuerzen/

DIY Natural https://www.diynatural.com/natural-fabric-dyes/

Wikihow https://www.wikihow.com/Make-Natural-Dyes

All Natural Dyeing http://www.allnaturaldyeing.com/natural-dye-colors/

Natural Products that give dye:




Safflower oder Färberdistel


japanischer Knöterich

blaue Kartoffeln



Wildherbs that create natural patterns:






Chemicals used in Synth Dye:

Synthetic color agents are largely produced threw petrol industry and its chemicals. It is very toxic and polluting our natural water sources and ecosystems. Beyond the fashion industry synthetic dye and color industry is a shadow industry that reveals the real impact and scales in ecological pollution.

Alkylphenols Azo dyes Brominated and chlorinated flame retardants Cadmium, lead, mercury and chromium Chlorinated solvents Chlorobenzenes Chlorophenols Organotin compounds Pefrluorinated chemicals Phthalates Short-chain chlorinated paraffins

Bacterial Dye

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Purple: Janthinobacterium lividum https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janthinobacterium_lividum

RED: Arthrobacter agilis https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthrobacter_agilis


Micrococcus Luteus https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Micrococcus_luteus

Streptomyces Colicolor https://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.php/Streptomyces_coelicolor

More Related Links and other projects:

Open Calls on Textile making: http://tribe-against-machine.org/open_call2018/

Fastweb Digital Academy: https://www.fastwebdigital.academy

Urban Bee Lab - Pigmented Bacteria: https://urbanbeelab.okno.be/doku.php?id=dyeing_with_bacteria

Article - Bacterial dyes in Fashion: https://www.asm.org/Articles/2017/November/bacterial-dyes-in-fashion

Living Color - iBook: https://issuu.com/kukkadesign/docs/living_colour-ibook

Creative in Residence at Ginkgo Bioworks: https://www.ginkgobioworks.com/2018/04/11/creative-in-residence/

Faber Futures: https://faberfutures.com/about/#section-Mission

Links to ethnobotanical References:

(feel free to add)

• Paracelsus Paracelsus (1493 - 1541), Theophrastus Bombast von Hohenheim, fälschlich auch Philippus Theophrastus Aureolus Bombastus von Hohenheim genannt, deutscher Arzt und Reformator der Medizin Quelle: Paracelsus, Mensch und Schöpfung Alle Dinge sind Gift, und nichts ist ohne Gift. Allein die Dosis macht, daß ein Ding kein Gift ist.

Heilkräuter Lexikon Online (German) https://www.heilkraeuter.de/lexikon/

Date & Location

Saturday 24. March 2019

[1],Sattelkammer is an artspace based in Bern, curated by Mirijam Gallo


Workshop is happening from 11-16 Uhr Belches Colorbath Wildherb Walk Wildherb Food Pattern Creation

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