6500 Silk Worms Spin One Heck Of A Cloud

Honestly, it seems like silk pajamas are on a downswing in popularity. Which is a damn shame. But the Mediated Matter Research Group (part of the MIT Media Lab) recently put thousands of silkworms to work on an architectural project that combines the worms’ natural talent with computer modelling.

Silk Pavilion consists of 26 silk polygons which act as the structure of the piece. Made of silk thread laid by a Computer-Numerically Controlled (CNC) machine, the polygons were a template on which to place 6500 silkworms which produced natural, unprocessed silk patches. The silkworms worked until the whole structure had been covered.

The CNC used an algorithm that had analysed the patterns in worm-generated patches of silk, and then produced the first level of structure. The silkworms themselves created the second level, working as a sort of natural 3D printer. This gets to the heart of the piece as an interplay between natural and digital construction. The next trend in interior design should definitely be loosing thousands of silk worms on your house and letting them redecorate. [Creative Applications]