The main emphasis of the research in the group concerns model membranes. Our favorite system is giant unilamellar vesicles. These giants are only a few tens of microns in size, which defines their unique property: they are visible under a light microscope. Thus, giant vesicles provide a handy biomimetic tool for displaying directly the response of the membrane on the cell-size scale. Our group employs them for systematic measurements of the properties of lipid bilayers as a function of membrane composition and phase state, surrounding media, and temperature. We also investigate membrane responses to external factors, for example ions, amphiphilic (biomacro)molecules and polymers, membrane-wetting aqueous phases, hydrodynamic flows or electromagnetic fields.