One of the most memorable guest speakers at BDW 2012, brilliant French designer Mathieu Lehanneur, designed the interior of Wikibar, home of an amazing new food packaging concept: WikiPearl


The cafe is the first in a proposed chain of WikiBars selling an innovative range of WikiPearl foods protected by an edible skin. Products in the range include ice creams that don’t melt when touched, yoghurts that can be eaten without a spoon and cheeses that don’t need to be wrapped in foil. Mathieu has created a decor symbolised by a mirror-light, an illuminating and reflective object formed of hexagons “a geometrical reference to the molecular structure of WikiPearl laminations. A graphic design and a matter of cookery demonstrations for this revolutionary concept.” Referencing the molecular structure of the food, Mathieu Lehanneur used a tessellated pattern of hexagons as the motif for the cafe’s interior. This motif was applied to a mirrored light on the ceiling and a seating area beside the window. The outlines of hexagons also shine through the counter from lighting concealed underneath.


WikiPearl™ comes from an idea of bio-creator and Harvard professor David Edwards. Following an enlightening conversation about “tensegrity” with Ken Snelson, a New York sculptor, Dr. Edwards wondered whether it would be possible to design food and beverage packaging like nature designs fruits and vegetables. What followed was a longer reflection with Harvard students around the possibility of transporting water in ways inspired by our biological cell. The result of their work is this incredible new concept, both tasty and natural, scientific and eco-friendly edible food & beverage packaging solutions.


P.S. Mathieu Lehanneur won the 2012 Belgrade Design Week Grand Prix! Click here to watch his lecture online: https://vimeo.com/45304151.

Photos by Michel Giesbrecht at Disegno.


The Belgrade Design Week was the best design conference I have ever enjoyed – the specific spirit of the city in a kind of in between status, the rough tension which can still be felt ten years after the bombs, the pride and the looking for new orientation especially in the young generation – all this is giving the BDW a special flair far away from the current events of the global design circus. In addition the enthusiastic organizational team trying hardly but unsuccessfully to keep the program along the schedules, the informal exchange between the international speakers, the loss of any discipline, the parties on the river … what ever and how ever the interrelations between these aspects are working – it makes the BDW an unique, likeable, inspiring and productive event, I will never forget.