GINTS GABRANS (Riga, Latvia)

FOOOD by Gints Gabrans, 2015, mixed media, transgenic bacteria

The United Nations estimates that by 2050 the world’s population will reach 9 billion and it will be necessary to produce 70% more food. Thus instead of producing greater amounts of food, this project offers other solutions and studies the interaction of these new ideas with culture, environment and human.

This project is based on the artist’s genetic modification of metabolic bifidobacteria outside the body giving them the ability to synthesize an enzyme that can break down cellulose.

Cellulose forms the cell walls of all plants. For the human metabolism, the indigestible cellulose cell wall reduces the nutritional energy value of food. These cellulolytic enzymes would allow humans to make a third more efficient use of food from the plant world – potatoes, etc. They would also allow the more efficient use of completely new types of food resources even, for example, cellulose containing wood and paper.