Jerry's Animal/Human Hybrids: A Sculpture Project
Project 2015-08-04 18:29:26 +1200
I am taking a Bachelor of Visual Arts at Otago Polytechnic, and for my project, I have chosen a subject that means a lot to me and, hopefully, to you.
My entire project is based around the ideas of the human, the animal, and the hybrid and human impact on the sustainability of the Earths environments.
Through my project, I intend to help raise awareness of the animal cruelty and mistreatment that we, as a society, endorse.
For more updates and images check out my Instagram
I'm constructing seven, near human sized, figures. Each of these figures is based off animals that are connected to humans, and our environment.
The animals I have chosen with are chickens, cows, sheep, monkeys, fish, bats and bees.
These are animals that we use a lot in farming and production for their meat and fur or skins and other products. They also have their own important roles, such as bees pollinating plant life, and bats to keep the insect population down.
These animals will be crossed with the human to create hybrids.
However this merging of human and animal does not go without conflict. Because of our human nature, we are killing off other species, whether it is deliberate or not.
In regard to this destructive tendency of ours, my hybrids will be in conflict with each other and themselves; the human elements trying to eat and kill or part from the animal.
However, if the human part of these hybrids were to finish the job and completely devour or kill the animal part, the creature would not be able to survive; it needs both parts to survive. This is a comment on how we need animals, not just as a food source and resource, but to keep the earth in a habitable state. The figures are to be arranged to give the appearance of the likes of a sacrificial type ritual, exposing their cannibal like behaviours.
The animal seen as a symbol in today’s society has had much of its power taken away, trapping it in an environment that is so detached from its own and dehumanized to the point that it can no longer be viewed as its own creature. I try in my work to give back some of that power to the animal, even though human and animal are connected as a hybrid, the power of the animal comes in that without it, the human side would die.
It is this relationship of the animal, with the Earth, which creates the many ecosystems that keep the world habitable. This cannot be recreated by humans. If some of the key animals in these systems are made extinct, the balance of these ecosystems falls out and this could have devastating effect for human life. It’s this power of balance that the animal has over the human and which I am trying to explore.
The finished work will be part of an exhibition called Site at the Dunedin School of Art in late November 2015
What Needs To Be Done
At this point I have welded all of the figures together and begun building up the shape on them. The next stages of the project is to fill out the bodies. I am using materials such as expanding foam and plaster to do this.
The sheep hybrid has had this done already and has had wool plastered on. This is where I need to get to with the rest of the figures; plastering on their fur and feathers.
From there I will create moulds of different body parts such as the head, chest, feet, hands and arms. These moulds will then be used to reproduce the parts in silicone and latex. I will then add these onto the figures and move on to the next stage of adding some of the more grotesque elements of the work, blood and guts etc... made with foam and latex.
After this, all that really needs doing is the detailing and final touch ups according to the different figures. The Bee figure is the only one that will need slightly different treatment; this will most likely be creating the shell of its abdomen from fiberglass.
Where The Funding Goes
The cost of materials is not cheap and to make this work the best it can be, all the funding will be going to towards the right materials required for the works.
Some of the materials include: steel, chicken wire, expanding foam, plaster and plaster bandage, latex, silicone, fiberglass, wool, skins, fur and feathers.
The funds will also be used for the creation of plinths and stands, on which the finished works will be exhibited.