Victimless Leather Coat Falls Victim to Science













Halloween may be over, but the creepiness of this next innovation seems to have just begun. When I first read about this idea I immediately thought of three things: Silence of the Lambs, Body Exhibits and those dresses made of human hair. I only wish I would have read about it sooner. What is it? It is a coat grown from living stem cells.

That's right, I said it is a coat grown from living stem cells. The purpose for it... is confusing. It is unclear to me if this is suppose to be controversial art, a science project, or a means of coming up with an innovation which allows people the future possibility to wear leather without killing animals.

The name of the coat- Victimless Leather. Tiny as it is (was), it speaks volumes. "This artistic grown garment will confront people with the moral implications of wearing parts of dead animals for protective and aesthetic reasons and will further confront notions of relationships with living systems manipulated or otherwise. An actualized possibility of wearing ‘leather' without killing an animal is offered as a starting point for cultural discussion."

The responsible party for creating this tiny victimless coat is a group of scientist and The School of Anatomy and Human Biology at the University of Western Australia. Unfortunately or fortunately, depends on how you look at it, earlier this year, according to Grinding, while on display in a New York Exhibit the coat was cut off from life support (a.k.a killed) by the curator when it grew too large for it's container.

Now, consider this a silly question, but doesn't this make the victimless coat ironically a victim? What do you think? What if this project had succeed or continued in some other way and larger coats could be grown? If it allowed you to wear leather without sacrificing an animal would you wear it?

To read more about the project visit The Tissue Culture and Art Project website .

Via Environmental Graffiti

Nov 4, 2008
by Beth Graddon-Hodgson
Beth Graddon-Hodgson's picture

 I'd have to say that if

 I'd have to say that if they're creating a LIVING coat and then essentially killing it for distribution, it is just as bad as killng animals for clothing. Creepy, controversial and fascinating all at the same time. The best kind of article, thanks Gloria!

Beth Hodgson
Innovative Business Writer