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Bio-Architecture with Shneel Bhayana

Tiny Farm Friends Ep. 10

We cannot work in our creative silos if we want to find solutions to combat climate change. A designer needs to transcend her creative boundaries and collaborate with other disciplines. Today, we discover how innovative solutions can emerge through multi-disciplinary partnerships. Our guest today considers herself a crazy optimist, a misfit. She is someone who introduced me to the endless potential of collaboration with fellow humans and other living organisms. Meet Shneel Bhayana. Shneel Bhayana is an Architect, a Biodesign Researcher, a social entrepreneur, and a TEDx Speaker. She has recently completed her Ph.D. Research as part of the Bio-Integrated Design (Bio-ID) Lab at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL, UK. Working at the intersection of design, biology, engineering, and material sciences, she investigates the fabrication of large-scale photosynthetic systems for applications within Architecture.

" If Architecture has to become natural and biological, how can we do that? That happens by reinventing and re-understanding materials from the bottom up, from the minutest scale. "

Images Courtesy: Shneel Bhayana Shneel’s research stems from fabricating novel living materials that can perform natural processes from the bottom up, developing new tools of 3D Printing and Robotic Fabrication. She proposed Indus, challenging her research’s application within the existing urban context. A system designed to empower small-scale artisanal communities to adapt futuristic solutions for treating polluted water by themselves and through cultural techniques readily available to them.​ As part of her research, she has developed Indus - a wall designed to clean polluted water using the natural processes of micro-organisms, specifically microalgae. The project is developed in close collaboration between the Departments of Architecture and Biochemical Engineering at UCL. Her work has won many awards and has been exhibited at various International Design Exhibitions such as the Centre Pompidou in Paris, in 2019, London Design Festival, London, 2018 & 2019, and at the BioTallinn Biennale, Estonia, 2017. In this conversation we talk about her journey from being an architect to becoming a bio-architect, the background story of her Indus project, the need for inter-disciplinary partnerships and her vision for the future. We also talk about the potential of microalgae and micro-organisms. This conversation will broaden your horizon, give you a sneakpeak into the future of architecture design and inspire you to push your creative limits. Enjoy the conversation! You can watch it on Youtube or stream it on Apple, spotify or your favourite platform. You can dive deeper into her work and reach out to Shneel on the following links: Website:;;; Ted Talk: Designing Living systems to clean polluted water – Bio Architecture for TedxGateway, Mumbai, India, 2020 LinkedIn: Instagram: @induswater; @bio-id; @the_shneel_chronicles Twitter: shneelmalik



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