SEAmpathy by daniel elkayam explores using algae to create vegan materials

SEAmpathy by daniel elkayam explores using algae to create vegan materials

jerusalem based designer, daniel elkayam, presents ‘SEAmpathy’ – a project that explores using algae to make a series of vegan materials. by embracing the idea of biophilia, the work examines forming a connection between humans and nature. taking two different approaches, elkayam has created ‘YAMA’ and ‘MAYMA’, which both use the algae to envision a more sustainable design process.

all images © oded antman



‘YAMA’ is a partition that proposes to use the algae as a versatile sheet with the potential of recycling and industrialization. harnessing circular design and a zero waste approach, elkayam has created the biomaterial so that it can be used and reused by repeating the process of its ‘cooking’. at the end of its life cycle, the sheet can be used as raw material for new casting, or returned to nature. in this way, the material preserves its contents and properties, and allows maximal utilization with minimal environmental impact.

YAMA – detail



‘MAYMA’ is the reconstruction of the algae to make a configuration of living fibers that sustain photosynthesis. after many attempts, the designer reached the accuracy required to produce a shell for the algae that on the one hand allows the material to transform into a formation of spheres or fibers, and on the other, allows gases to exchange and the continuation of living material. ‘MAYMA’ was conceived in collaboratation with weizmann institution for science and dr. filipe natalio’s lab for researching and developing methods for creating living matter.

YAMA – display of algae-made biosheets



overall, the project provides a green alternative to matter and seeks to bring man and nature together by examining the relationship between them, and giving man an active role in growing and recycling the object. at the same time, the biophilic values that come up through the objects create a sort of inner peace and weakens the urge to consume more and more, leading to healthier and better consumption habits.



SEAmpathy – material research

Bio-sheets experiments on diversity

experimentation display



MAYMA – wondering on a living material

MAYMA – Injected living pattern inspired by the inner construction of Ulva algae

MAYMA – raw living fiber

MAYMA – woven fiber combination of traditional craft and new raw material



project info:


project name: ‘SEAmpathy’

design: daniel elkayam

photography: oded antman


designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: lynne myers | designboom

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