Holiday Meat 

interactive installation, December 2014

 

This was one of my two pieces for the Assemblage Project for my first-year sculpture class. It required creating a composition using found objects. They needed to appear as if they were store-bought and installed somewhere on my school campus.

Presented in early December, the scene depicts an elegantly clad, stuff-animal family gathering around a table about to eat a fancy Holiday dinner. There is an open spot welcome for the viewer to sit at. Each animal is dressed slightly differently and collectively symbolizes the 'nuclear family'. However, only three of the four seats are filled allowing the viewer to be welcomed into their dinner. On the table, there are plastic cutlery; dollar store white plates and thrift shop gravy bowl rimmed with gold marker; 2 long candles; 4 wine glasses, one of which is broken; white cloth napkins; a gravy bowl; and the centrepiece. The centrepiece is a poorly-treated, dirty, human baby doll tied like a baby pig on a platter. I put an old hair-tie around its head to look like a headband and slightly humanize it. Around and beneath the doll are fake evergreen branches and red beads strung for decoration.

With Christmas around the corner, I wanted to make a criticism against the food industry and how we, as a society, fail to consider this issue when purchasing our holiday meat. This piece highlights how people typically think of themselves when getting ready for a fancy dinner: we want to dress up and look good. Although giving and volunteering is more prevalent at this time of year, I feel like the reason "because it's Christmas" lacks the sincere gestures. Therefore, as cheap people, we try to make ourselves externally look good. We care about our appearances and our reputations. However, when we gather together, we fail to think about our food that was once living. To create maximal discomfort, I played a little role-reversal between the humans and the animals. Moreover, I intentionally left the chair immediately closest to the viewer welcoming the viewer to the cruel dinner.

This public art activist piece was installed in the heart of the Langara cafeteria.


This piece serves as an uncomfortable reminder to the viewer about the extreme animal cruelty within the food industry. 

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