Pigs Bladder Football sets out a remarkable challenge: to culture the world’s first bio-engineered football, grown from living animal cells.
During 2011 and 2012, I have been in residence at the University of Liverpool’s Clinical Engineering Research Unit collaborating with Professor John Hunt and Theun Van Veen to develop bespoke protocols for harvesting animal tissue. Through biological experimentation, rapid prototyping and an iterative design process, this work has been an exercise of precise tissue engineering.
The proof of concept bio-egineered footballs, which will be produced by replicating the same techniques used to create artificial human organs, encourage us to consider the that role life sciences will have in our daily lives both today and in the future. The work also references the colliding worlds of human enhancement, the bio-technology industry and the global capitalisation of sport.
Pigs Bladder Football is a new commission for Abandon Normal Devices 2012. The work is funded by the Wellcome Trust and has been awarded the London 2012 Inspire Mark. The work has been produced in close collaboration with the University of Liverpool Clinical Engineering Unit.
26 February 2012