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John Bertolaso

Multidisciplinary Designer,
Mechanical Engineer and Explorer

As a mechanical engineer and multidisciplinary designer, my work bridges the realms of sciences and arts to explore how emerging technologies, design and research can help us build more resilient and sustainable futures.

Beyond pragmatism, my projects aim to probe and provoke in order to make us question our reality and what could be. I’m very interested in the futures of food and agriculture, but I also think a lot about what materials, supply chains, architecture and networked urbanism might look like tomorrow.

From glacial equatorial jungles to some of the most populated cities, the adventures I go on help me discover spectrums within cultures, people and behaviours, and continually influence my process.

I’m currently exploring materials, industrial processes and environmental sustainability at Daye where we are raising the standards in female health products and research. By night, I also grow the world’s most sustainable, transparent and future-proof cotton to help fashion companies clean up their supply chains.

Drop me a line if you want to connect or collaborate.

Projects

hydroCotton

Sustainable, transparent and future-proof cotton

hydroCotton - Radically sustainable, transparent and future-proof cotton - John Bertolaso
Spring

Automated food growing unit

Spring - Building symbiosis between man and nature - John Bertolaso
A food manifesto

Foundations for future food production

Manifesto for the future of food production - Foundational thoughts about feeding ourselves in the coming decades - John Bertolaso
Ecotrack

Sustainable food app

Ecotrack - Bringing transparency to sustainable food choices - John Bertolaso
Generations (pt.1)

Modular garments

Generations (pt.1) - Exploring a more responsible way to design and construct garments - John Bertolaso
Generations (pt.2)

Modular garments

Generations (pt.2) - Exploring a more responsible way to design and construct garments in collaboration with Bianca Saunders - John Bertolasoo
CarryOn

Waste management initiative

CarryOn - Investigating New York City's waste streams - John Bertolaso
Verse

Augmented speech assistance

Verse - Giving a voice to people suffering from cognitive and speech disorders - John Bertolaso
In need of transformation

Augmented materiality

In Need of Transformation - Augmenting materiality through craft/automation hybrid processes (in collaboration with Studio INI) - John Bertolaso
Yōsei

Interactive digital being

Yosei - interactive digital being - by John Bertolaso
Blackbox

Augmented adventures

Blackbox - Augmenting adventures by embedding memories in garments (in collaboration with Vollebak) - John Bertolaso
Perfect?

Self and other

Perfect? - Challenging ideals of the self - John Bertolaso
Prosthetic Foot

Biomedical engineering

Prosthetic Foot for Cross-Country Skiing - Enabling physically impaired cross-country skiers and biathlete to compete - John Bertolaso
Thermoelectric Device

Off-grid electricity

Thermoelectric Device - Providing safe energy in developing countries - John Bertolaso

Experience

2019 - now Senior Design Engineer
Daye, London
2019 - now Co-founder & CDO
hydroCotton, London
2017 - 2019 Design Engineer
Random International, London
2017 - 2018 Design Engineer and Advisor
Studio INI, London
2016 - 2017 Design Engineer
Tangent, London
2013 Summer Intern
Troika, London
2012 - 2013 Co-Founder & Treasurer
Imperial College Design Collective, London
2012 Design Researcher (UROP)
Imperial College London, London
2006 - 2010 Summer Intern
TR Engineering, Luxembourg
2008 - 2009 Group Leader
Patro Desmond Tutu, Belgium

Education

2014 - 2016 Global Innovation Design (MA, MSc)
Royal College of Art & Imperial College London,
Pratt Institute (NYC),
Keio Media Design (Tokyo)
2010 - 2014 Mechanical Engineering (MEng)
Imperial College London
2009 - 2010 Architecture (1st year)
Institut Supérieur d’Architecture Saint-Luc, Brussels

Awards

2014 - 2016 Industrial Design Studentship,
Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851

Skills

Field of work → Design engineering, design thinking, future probing, cross-cultural design research, human-centered design, experience design
→ Problem solving, prototyping, technical drawings, industrial design and DFM, project management, field implementation
Softwares Adobe Creative Suite, Solidworks, C4D, HTML/CSS, Javascript, Processing, Arduino, Rhinoceros, Unity (basic), InVision
Manufacturing Metals, polymers, woods
→ lathe, milling machine, drill press, band saw, table saw, power saw, belt sander, grinder
→ rapid prototyping, vacuum forming, design for injection moulding
Languages French (mother tongue, fully fluent), English (fully fluent), Spanish (conversational, good reading)