Reproductive Futures

Funded by a Wellcome Trust Arts Award.

From tales about the stork, to the ‘birds and the bees’, we have long used story-telling as a way to inform children about families, and ‘where babies come from’.

In the last forty years we have progressed from the first IVF babies, to the current discussion of creating artificial gametes from stem cells or somatic cells. This presents the potential for ‘sperm’ or ‘eggs’ to be created from anyone-regardless of gender, age or sexuality.

Within the content of this rapid acceleration and diversification in ART (Artificial Reproductive Technologies) – how will the stories we tell children evolve? Moreover, will the techniques themselves have the potential to fundamentally change the way we perceive parenthood and reproduction?

Reproductive Futures investigates scientific and technological developments in the creation of artificial gametes from stem cells to create new narratives in the form of three illustrated children stories to explain how babies will be conceived in the future. The project also consists of an extensive timeline which looks back at reproductive technologies from the 1800s onwards.

V&A London Design Festival, Digital Design Weekend.