Back to mycelium! Throughout my research I have been astonished at the amount of research and opportunities that have been discovered with this material…and yet there is still so much more that could be done.
Some of the projects I came across started to get my inspiration cogs turning; first of all I was reminded of the work that Ecovative do in the States (using mycelium as a glue-like substance to hold together agricultural waste and use the product as a biodegradable packaging component). Then I came across Eric Klarenbeeks mycelium chair (filling a 3D printed structure with mycelium spawn on a medium of straw to make a dense but lightweight core) and a collection of work by the organisation Fungal Futures, which continue to open my eyes into the possible advances in material properties when working with mycelium and fungi.
My concern is that I could easily buy some grow-it-yourself mycelium spawn from Ecovative in New York for as little as $10, but then it would take five weeks, $40 and countless thousands of gallons of oil to transport it across the Atlantic Ocean to my studio in Edinburgh. Especially when I know that one can grow mycelium anywhere in the world depending on strain and medium.
My next challenge is to grow it myself and to discuss variations in how to go about it with those who are in the field, namely professors of mycology, engineers and scientists who have conducted similar research.
Some of the websites I have found most useful as part of my research so far: