Mothers of Pearl

Pearl made of human breath

Design and photography by Jun Kamei

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Human breath into Pearl

“Mothers of pearl” is an installation which transforms the human breath into a crystal of pearl, resulting over the course of weeks in a pearl jewellery.

In Nature, pearls grow inside of pearl oyster by the accumulation of a substance called calcium carbonate crystal around a template inserted in the oyster. The beautiful nature of the pearls comes from the many layers of calcium carbonate crystals.


The Technology

By blowing the human breath into a liquid containing 3 ingredients - calcium hydroxide, magnesium chloride and poly acrylic acid -  the carbon dioxide contained in our breath is captured and turned into a thin calcium carbonate crystal, in other word a thin layer of pearl. Different templates can be used to grow the pearl on, such as curved woods, leaves and fine petals from flowers.

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You become the jewellery

The accumulation of these pearl layers creates a jewellery piece with specific textures. The nurtured pearl contains the exhaled carbon dioxide from our body, which means that it is made with the same atom as our body. This project aims to question our relationship with objects and hack our perception of value, when the pearl jewellery becomes a physical history of our life.