Thomas Maincent

Department: Contextual Design

Spider Farm

Each creature has evolved to fit perfectly into a specific biological niche. So what better way to produce a 100% natural product than to utilise such innate design and let nature do the rest? The Chinese have done it for thousands of years, carefully cultivating silk worms for silk.
Now, Thomas Maincent proposes to do the same with Madagascar silk spiders. Their silk is a magnificent golden colour and is five times stronger than steel of the same thickness, while also remaining elastic, making it a highly attractive raw material.
Maincent’s search for new, more natural production methods brought forth a concept for a bio-factory, entitled Spider Farm. This would mimic the natural setting in which the spiders live in the wild; supplying them with everything they need to allow humans to harvest their silk. So far, such industrial-scale harvesting has never been accomplished, partly owing to the cannibalistic nature of the spiders. The bio-factory can be viewed as a tribute to nature’s own, super-efficient silk manufacturers – the spiders themselves.

Copyright Design Academy Eindhoven

Project-159Project-159 Thomas Maincent
Copyright: Design Academy Eindhoven
Photographs: Vincent van Gurp