What are these crazy, beautiful images? Well, they are none other than Magnus Larsson’s Dune Project, which is “Arenaceous Anti-Desertification Architecture.” What does that mean? Let me clarify: he’s proposed a 6,000km-long artificially solidified sandstone wall to line the Sahara Desert. The structure would provide refuge housing, as well as prevent desertification (the spreading of the desert).
How does he propose creating this wall? By using bacteria, clearly. Larsson started with the work of the Soil Interactions Lab at UC Davis, which allowed Larsson to discover he could push the bacteria bacillus pasteurii through the sand. This bacterium then solidifies the sand into sandstone. Larsson even imagined the way he would do this: Essentially, his idea is to create a 3D printer to push bacteria down into the sand and create the structure for this landscape (see photo below). Then, all that needs to be done is to push out the loose sand to make the shelter - and hopefully, wind would blow out that sand naturally.
This project could definitely be praised for its lateral, creative thinking… And the forms are gorgeous. For more information about this project, check out BLDGBLOG, the Flickr set, or the Holcim Foundation.