Ep. 213: The Quiet Rebellion of Biodesigner Natsai Audrey Chieza


Natsai Audrey Chieza spent her youth in Zimbabwe in a close-knit extended family where she and her cousins were “in each others’ pockets.” In her teenage years the national economy crashed, necessitating a family relocation to the UK, and she began learning the skill of “not belonging.” Architecture studies proved alienating so she found a way to combine them with her love of fashion (to the consternation of her professors.) Rejecting the prescribed path of a professional architect, she instead pursued a postgraduate program in Material Futures that set her on a path of designing with bacteria. Now, she’s founded Faber Futures, a biodesign studio, and Normal Phenomena of Life, an artful lifestyle and fashion brand that also functions as a working prototype of a new model bioeconomy. She’s spent her whole life quietly not doing what was expected of her, and in this space of outsiderness she’s been very busy creating new paradigms for how we might collaborate with nature and new models for the equitable stewardship of these new biotechnologies. So, in terms of cultural infrastructure, she is an architect after all! 


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Amy Devers

Amy Devers is a designer, fabricator, educator, and media personality on a mission to reveal the humanity behind the design that shapes our world.

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