“Exploring boundaries by piercing barriers”

Jalila Essaidi | Trends Galore


In a world with increased interest for biotechnology and life sciences, Jalila Essaïdi is working at the intersection of biotechnology and the creative industry. Inspired by the relativity and dual nature of safety Essaïdi developed a bulletproof skin by reinforcing in vitro human skin with spider silk from genetically modified goats. Jalila Essaïdi will take you through the story behind the creation of the bulletproof skin and envision its possible uses.

From there out on Essaïdi will share her view on bio-art and biotechnologies and the role they already play in our society, which according to her will only increase in the near future. An important part in this process is to stimulate our society and give them the right tools, not only to join the debate around new biotechnologies but also to get them in touch with such innovations.

A good example for this is Jalila Essaïdi’s latest project ‘Mestic ®’, a bioplastic derived from manure and a proposed solution for the excess manure problem we face in the Netherlands. The overarching goal is to create a circular economy with cow manure to generate new sustainable raw materials that can be used by the manufacturing industry..

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Jalila Essaïdi is a Dutch artist and entrepreneur based in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, and specialized in the fields of modern biotechnology and biological arts (bio-art). Essaïdi is director of Inspidere B.V., a biotech company based in Brainport Region Eindhoven. In 2011 Essaïdi founded the BioArt Laboratories Foundation, a foundation that offers citizens access to a creative hybrid laboratory and the tools and knowledge of the life sciences.

She is known for her work ‘2.6g 329m/s’, also known as ‘Bulletproof Skin’, a project that achieved bioengineered bulletproof human skin, reinforced with synthetic spider silk. The project was coined as a prime example of international coöperation by the Ministry of Economic Affairs. Her more recent project, ‘Mestic®’, is a bioplastic directly derived from manure.

Working with modern biotechnology Essaïdi focuses on topics that are relevant today. With her interdisciplinary and collaborative approach, she is as a spider in her web, observing and controlling every bit of movement.

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