In collaboration with award-winning British chocolatier Paul Young, the entrepreneur recently created Emporious: The Sweetshop of the Future & the Future of Confectionery, designed with the year 2020 in mind.
This year, Gaye will be a curator at FutureFest 2016, (September 17-18) at Tobacco Dock, London, which explores the possibilities of our future lifestyle, such as how gentics will influence consumer shopping habits.
Emporious is a futuristic space that challenges traditional colors, textures and tastes enhanced by 3D printing. It was on display for the first time at Nesta’s FutureFest last year.
“Sweets provide the perfect imaginarium for fun, creative innovation and experimentation,” said Gaye.
“Color, texture, shape, and form, play a significant part of this flavorsome world, however, the future of this creative space has been challenged most recently by cumulative research and public awareness around the less beneficial effect of sugar.
“The future of decadence embraces wild new ingredients, textures and flavors, and allows for advances in manufacturing procedures and opportunities for innovations in brand narrative and packaging."
According to Gaye, Emporious was invented as a way for people to look at natural functional food, diet, nutrition and taste in a different light as well as promoting sustainable ideas and fair trade practices.
Together with Young, the duo created soft-floss lamps; using a candy floss machine to spin unrefined sugar into thin strands which were molded into free standing light fittings; Nano Rings, a machine-made dark chocolate lattice ring sprayed with metallic red and rosemary aroma and a chandelier, suspended with almost 400 edible chocolate 'Thirst Globes', hand filled with de-hydrated powders.
Gaye said the soft-floss lamps, which were made in layers and coated with natural de-hydrated banana and coconut sherbet for flavor, suggest a return to sugar as a decoration not sustenance, and in future this could be as a result of consumer concerns over unhealthy aspects of candy.
The Nano Ring uses space to create volume and change the mouth feel and perception of a small amount of chocolate with a larger surface area. As an edible piece of display art, 3D printed products will become commonplace in the sweet shop of the future, according to Gaye.
Edible chocolate Thirst Globes
As a nod to the shortage of water supply, the Thirst Globes represent how manufacturers will replace confectionery with liquid-free fillings, mixed with cacao butter and de-hydrated powers.
“In a world where cocoa prices will soar and sugar will continue to be the enemy, leading to sugar taxes being levied, sugar-free Micro Disruption Bars were created, sweetened with coconut nectar," added Gaye.
“The surface area of the bar was graffitied with ad hoc colors and designs using pigmented cocoa butter. This visual disruption acted as a statement against perfection and beauty.”
The edible ‘diamonds’ reflected how the luxury and kudos of having diamonds might decline, with ethical concerns over land and the welfare of workers.
'Fakery' will be seen as good, where replicas rule. Re-imagining realness is how the virtual and 3D world will co-exist. A lavender scent was sprayed into each box with a one-carat edible diamond inside.
Young, former head pastry chef for celebrity chef Marco Pierre White, said his ‘whole business’ is about making handmade chocolate but in the future the industry will rely more on machines, such as 3D printers.
He believes chocolate will have more decoration, but it is already getting smaller and in 20 years’ time consumers will pay £10 ($13) for a small bar.
Gaye, director of Bellwether: Food Trends is curator of the FutureThrive theme at FutureFest 2016 organized by Nesta and Sedition which invites international artists and creatives to submit work to the 2016 FutureFest Art Prize based on four themes: Love, Play, Thrive and Work.
Future Thrive is based on experiences and senses and how we can develop those in the future. It tires to predict consumer shopping habits as tastes change, societies grow, what people eat and smell.
Twelve works (three for each theme) will be shortlisted and exhibited at the festival. A panel of judges will shortlist the best work and the winners will be announced at FutureFest where the winners will get a £500 ($660) cash prize.