(Closed) Workshop Symbiotic Systemsby Ivan Henriques

Date: 29 to 30 April 2016

Apply: before April 01  –  info@machinewilderness.net  –

Max 10 participants (please include a short motivation)

Design exercise to explore how to adapt a machine to natural systems, with focus in the specific landscape from Amstelpark. Brainstorm with the participants the needs and functions of a bio-robotic structure inspired by the park’s landscape. Investigate how the relationship between this hybrid system and the resources and opportunities the park offers and re-think about a different equation: how to adapt machines to natural systems, looking at the environment as a partner from which we can learn to attempt to communicate with the living and non-living environment. Concepts of post-humanism and autopoiesis will be the basis of the workshop.

From 4 to 5 days (3 hours/day), once a week. Max 10 participants
The material will be discussed with the group along the workshop.


•    Metadesign – Humberto Maturana & Francisco Varela
•    Wildlife in the Anthropocene, Conservation after Nature – Jamie Lorimer
•    Three Ecologies – Felix Guattari


Day 01 – fri 29 April, morning:
•    Explanation about Ivan Henriques’ works: Bio-Machine evolution
•    Presentation of the participants
•    Discussion about the workshop and final goal
•    Division of the groups
Material: paper A3, pen, pencil, colour pen

Day 01 – fri 29 April, afternoon:

•    Groups explore Amstelpark
•    Bring/discuss ideas
•    Map Amstelpark and the group will underline on the map their choices of places
Material: Printed map from Amstelpark (size A0), thumbtacks, thin ropes (different colours), pen, pencil, colour pen, stickers (different colours)

Day 02 first part – sat 30 April:

•    Discussion with their team and myself the design of the bio-robotic structure for their specific place
•    Participants design & prototype robotic structure

Day 02 second part – sat 30 April:

•    Workshop with Vincent Friebe and Raoul Frese from the Laser Lab Amsterdam–> building bio-solar cells

•    Expanding upon the concepts of the bio-solar cells in the symbiotic machine (below) we explore new avenues of solar power conversion using plant derived materials mixed with semiconductor materials

Screen Shot 2016-03-10 at 8.53.21 PM


Office Rietveld Huis
Amstelpark 4
1083 HZ Amsterdam


Workshop report: see the blog post ‘Symbiotic Systems Workshop