The Feast: a banquet of crude empathy
‘The Feast: a banquet of crude empathy’ offers an unexpected moment of hospitality, which brings questions of scarcity and access to nourishment into the art space.
This installation was driven by my sense of inadequacy regarding what Brecht called ‘crude empathy’. A series of cooking pots have been transformed from feeding a group of people into an interactive relationship with dry grain. Spreading the grain on the ground and on the table symbolises unconfined nature beneath the pots as well as referring to harvest, waste and famine and the ritual of cooking, and the giving and receiving in circumstances of otherness. Corroded on the pots internal surfaces are sketchy images representing a harrowing reality.
Whitish large scrim bags are displayed on a long table and on the floor. They are filled with a limited amount of rice and a limited number of spoons, playing with the ratio of food being contained to communicate the ongoing shortage of supply.
At the end of the feast, the disappearance of food at the depleted tables, mingle with the passiveness of the objects. The juxtaposition of these static props in the exhibition space develop a sculptural language of communal domesticity in minimal setting. This transformation alienates the objects from their original state. The plate with caramel spoons as well as the hollowed spoons above and napkins become lyrical reminders conveying collected stories belonging to ‘the other’.
Plasma-cut stainless steel spoons, aluminium bowls, varied food, scrim, dried grains