speaking meat project

I’ve just realised I’ve never posted the images of the speaking meat artworks that were used in the exhibition Why Listen to Animals?  So here they are.  These fleshlumps each housed a bluetooth speaker – so they could ‘speak’ as they were handed around the audience (imagine a butchers shop dialogue between meats).

In this performance there were three different ‘voices’ and characters for the meat lumps:

  • baby meat (aka veal) – voiced by Bruce  (baby meat is animal becoming subject becoming object – (mooing then me-ing, then meat-ing, he is sweet and naive and knows nothing different, he is veal, $17.99 a kilo, light and juicy)
  • old diary cow  – voiced by me (daisy is angry and hysterical in the Lacanian sense- she rejects the master narrative, she knows she is a someone not a something, but doesn’t have a lot of alternatives to frame herself within)
  • grumpy steak – voiced by Bruce (grumpy steak is going off, he is the voice of the master narrative, and he’s happy he’s a steak (top of the ladder meat) and wants to ‘rest’ (like meat does), he calls daisy dog food, and tells them to shut up – he’s the heavy breather.

tentacles cast 1

Exciting day – first cast off the new 150cm mould.  I loved how the inverted cast looked like a mini-boobscape, it’s fantastic when the work has resonances with previous works.  The cast was easily demoulded with just a little split at the base, and at 150cm has quite a presence.  The texture is subtle and yet evocative.  Now time to start making more – it takes a minimum of a week to make a cast, and each will be individualised along the way.  Hoping to amass a large number of them to play around with install possibilities.

Work in progress – OktoLab

Over the last hot week or so I’ve made up the large (150cm) and small (50cm) Plasticine moulds – now to start painting on the latex layers for the casts.  Reading ‘The Case Against Octopus Farming’ and watching videos of people drying octopus in the sun … despite, or because of, the wonderful things I have been reading about octopuses – I have ended up looking at how we exploit, use and consume these wonderful animals.

work in progress OktoLab

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I’ve been working on some testers for OktoLab recently, and I’m now ready to make the moulds for this project.  Key themes are emerging regarding the peculiarities of Octopus breeding, ‘motherhood’ and current attempts to factory farm octopuses.  At this stage I’m envisaging an installation that includes a multiplicity of tentacles and eggs – but things might change as I produce the final casts.