Constructing A Sense of Taste

Publication Date


Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Title

Design With All Senses: Proceedings of the Design Modelling Symposium, Berlin 2019



First Page


Last Page



Designing for multisensory experiences has the potential to activate the intelligence of the body and allow us to explore and understand the world in new and unique ways. Often time’s architecture and building interiors are only designed for the visual, but when the visual is mingled with touch, taste and smell, a more complex and personal experience can be crafted through interactions with the user. This paper will discuss how taste can literally be applied to the built environment through digital modeling, 3D printing and the use of novel, edible materials that have the potential to season and flavor buildings and interiors to enrich and improve daily life regardless of ones visual abilities. Taste, which is the distinctive or essential flavor of something, can create new sensations and experiences because with taste and smell we are able to contemplate not only the object itself but also without exception the experience of it [1]. We can use our sense of taste to perceive and distinguish between the sweet, sour, bitter, or salty quality of a substance or a space. Taste can also evoke strong emotions, it can satisfy us and it can bring us great pleasure or displeasure and it can also evoke memories and associations, it’s sensual but it also has aesthetic potential. Different tastes can alter or enhance, what was once plain can be created again with seasoning or spiced up to be different, stronger, better. Taste is something that we acquire through personal experience, we learn about preferences and how to perceive differences.
In the examples described in this paper, the Coffee Coffee Pot and Coffee Coffee Cup, the Utah Tea Set, and The Cabin of 3D Printed Curiosities taste has literally been used to season the built environment by 3D printing with waste materials generated by coffee, tea, and wine production. The Saltygloo project is fabricated using local salt harvested from evaporation ponds. These materials are abundant, inexpensive, and readily available in almost every region of the world. What’s more, 3D-printed objects made of these materials have unique textural and aromatic properties that emerge from their material origins and transform the way we experience an object or a space.


3D printing, Additive manufacturing, Recycled materials, Architecture, Interior design