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The sound of the future? Speakers made from mushrooms

The project combines sound with sustainability

  • Olivia Wycech
  • 19 January 2023
The sound of the future? Speakers made from mushrooms

Mycelium is the root structure of mushrooms and is being used the world over as a sustainable alternative to plastic for its ability to spin almost microscopic fungal threads into materials like vegan leather and styrofoam-like packaging. Now, some creative players in the music industry have harvested their acoustic and sound-proofing superpower to make a sculptural sound system for a sound-based art exhibition in Montreal that ran late last year.

Read more: Space Available’s Dan Mitchell explored the power of mycelium in an exploration of Radical Fungi

In a collaboration between EDEN Power Corp and MYCOAUDIO, the speaker system swaps out a typical plastic foam lining for a reishi mushroom mycelium core insulation in a casing made from a raku-fired ceramic shell, which a Japanese method of firing that finishes with an organic and abstract art aesthetic. And since the roots of mycelium are similar to the foam insulation often used inside speakers, this not only negates the need for plastic but does so without reducing the acoustic quality of the speaker.

The exhibition took place at Forza gallery in Montreal and presented a series of eight of R1 speakers in a multi-sensory exhibition. The speakers sat on white podiums with the exhibition space, likening the experience to viewing art in a museum. Music from local acts like Cameron Morse, Kroy, Varfalvy, Feu St, Antoine, Amselysen, Boskorgï, Racine and Trafic des airs played on a loop from the speakers alongside a guided mediation and breath work sessions by Manoj Dias in collaboration with Open App.

EDEN Power Corp is a Montreal-based creative agency and research studio that explores eco-conscious materials like mushrooms and hemp while MYCOAUDIO designs and manufactures speakers that straddle the space between nature and audio technology. You can buy such speakers yourself…if you have the time and money. A single speaker will set you back $1,199 and takes three months to produce—but the novelty (and the planet) will last forever. Almost…

You can buy the sound of the future here

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