Mushrooms: New exhibition delves into the use of mushrooms as upcycled agro-waste to sustainable shoes and more

Mushrooms like most things that come from Mother Nature are incredibly versatile – they can be eaten, they can bring on hallucinations, they can be used as a material in the design of furniture and clothes, and they can even eat through plastic.

Now the humble mushroom is the subject of a new exhibition, Mushrooms: The Art, Design and Future of Fungi, whichcelebrates the rich legacy and potential of the remarkable organism, the ideas it inspires in the poetic, spiritual and psychedelic, and how it is inspiring new thinking around design and architecture.

The exhibition, which is currently on at London’s Somerset House until 26 April, features the works of over 40 artists, designers and musicians who take a look at fungi’s colourful cultural legacy, exploring sustainability and our relationship with the planet.

Mushrooms is split into three themes – Mycophilia, Magic Mushrooms, and Fungi Futures – and includes sculpture, hand-cut collage, painting, drawing, photography and film, and bio-based materials.

Among the works on display is a specially commissioned mycelium-based chair from British designer, Tom Dixon; a solar-powered mushroom suitcase from conceptual artist, Carsten Höller; a decomposable mushroom burial suit by Jae Rhim Lee designed to reduce the damaging environmental impact of the funeral industry; and a sustainable shoe design using mycellium by Belgian shoe designer Kristel Peters.

There will be a number of events to coincide with the exhibition including TABLE, a mushroom-inspired pop-up dining experience from chef and Spring restaurant founder Skye Gyngell.

Mushrooms: The Art, Design and Future of Fungi is currently on at London’s Somerset House until 26 April 2020

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyles including sustainable and green living. She also offers content services to businesses and individuals at Rosamedea.com

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