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{protocell:labs} is a digital laboratory developing protocells and researching artificial morphogenesis.

It was founded in 2021 by Luka Piskorec and Kane Borg, both practicing architects with strong backgrounds in algorithmic design and digital fabrication, teaching and research.

Piskorec and Borg met in Helsinki as researchers at Aalto Design of Structures group. In the past decade they’ve separately co-founded an architecture studio (TEN Studio based in Zürich and Belgrade), a computational design consultancy firm (Borg Markkula Oy based in Finland) and a fablab (Valletta, Malta). Through these, they’ve built some weird and wonderful things over the years. 

Feeling constrained by the standard modes of operation these ventures offered, they founded {protocell:labs} as a digital laboratory merging artistic and research practice. The lab investigates computational structures, mathematical forms of organisation, design algorithms, artificial biology, emergent morphogenesis and digital graphics. Their favourite modes of expression are chain-agnostic long-form generative collections, which they started releasing on fxhash in 2021, featuring strong bias for complex 3D geometry, choreographed animation and interactivity. 

As a matter of principle, they leave their code open (unminified and unobfuscated), available on public repositories (GitHub, which is also their website), and well documented through writing and talks so that it can serve as inspiration to others.

They see the development of open generative tools, the merging of artistic expression with scholarship, and the promotion of responsible web3 practices as a mission every generative artist should partake in.

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