Augmented Food Studio is a unique project designed to enhance our experience of food. Created by 26-year-old Swedish interaction designer Erika Marthins, the studio aims to explore and question the intersection of food and technology.
The studio’s first project introduced three interactive desserts, each brought to life by technology. The project, named Déguster l’augmenté, features a record made of chocolate, a robotic gelatin dessert, and a lollipop which refracts light to reveal a hidden message. Each component was designed to expand the eating experience beyond taste and texture alone, incorporating light, sound and movement. The resulting effect is a sensory spectacular which challenges our perception of food. By animating each dessert, the project blurs the lines between food and technology.
Marthins’ latest project, Taste Lab, created with Stella Speziali and Juan Garcia, and in collaboration with BeAnotherLab, uses virtual reality (VR) to challenge the senses and adds a unique dimension to the dining experience.
Here, Marthins talks with us about the relationship between food and technology, the role memory plays in eating and the intimacy of food.
What is augmented food and what do you hope to achieve by creating it?
There are two aspects of food from my point of view. The first is nourishment, essential for maintenance of life, and the second is the experience of food—the social aspect as well as the joy of eating. I explore these themes in my design project Déguster l’augmenté. The project involved integrating data directly into the surfaces of food, which I then call “augmented food”. The concept of augmented food brings a new dimension into a dish by creating a more personalized experience, and changing how we eat and consume food. It also explores our relationship with technology.
The idea was to augment three desserts with an animation, perception and sound experience. A compressed bite of edible culture that has the flavor of its own passion, telling a compelling story and heightening the customer experience.