(non-) local lab

Exploring the Problems and Potential of Invasive Plant Species in Thuringia Through Design

Beatriz Oria Lombardía

TLUBN, Umweltamt Weimar, LPV Rhön, Natura 2000 Station "Mittlere Saale"

März / March - 2023

Bauhaus Universität Weimar

Master of Arts


“(non-) local lab” explores creative ways to reappraise invasive species in a participatory context to rethink our relationship with non-human organisms, reflect on changing ecosystems, and question our role within them. During the project, invasive plants are consciously harvested – instead of removed – and transformed into material applications. The knowledge generated through experimentation, research, and fieldwork will be made available in the form of a series of workshops with Japanese knotweed (Fallopia japonica). To do that, a modular furniture system was designed and built, which serves as infrastructure to host the workshops in public spaces. A brief theoretical intro and three hands-on activities (textile dyeing, paper making and mat weaving) serve as multisensory activities to inspire the participants to discuss invasive neophytes, the controversy around them, future resources, environmental responsibility, migration, and globalisation.