THE BRAINUS ANALOLLY COMPLEX
The Brainus is an anus made of biopolymers, which was then seeded with brain tissue.
The Analolly is a lollypop made of biopolymers, which was then seeded with anal tissues.
The Public is invited to vote: Which would you rather lick, Brainus or Analolly, and Why?
The primary tissues used for these sculptures were taken from a dieing eel. The eel was killed for food and the primary brain and anal tissues were isolated from the waste of culinary excess. Before using these tissues as a medium of art and science expression, I had cleared the artistic use of semi-living kitchen food preparation 'waste' with Sue Lewis, Manager, Research Ethics and Animal Care, UWA. I participated in the Program in Animal Welfare, Ethics and Science (PAWES) as a prerequisite for the use of these tissues for creative expression from within the ANHB.
Nonetheless, I think it is important that state clearly, the killing of the eel was not a part of my research at SymbioticA, the ANHB or UWA. The killing of the eel was a part of my own personal gastronomic self-training as a chef. The eel was not killed for art and science expression alone. The Brainus/Analolly tissues were procured from the fresh dying flesh of a planned to be dinner. The cooking began before the isolation of tissues, not vice-versa. And the eel was eaten.
This was my attempt at not wasting life on art but, to some extent, I failed. The eel was butchered badly and my Do It Yourself shame should not be shouldered by anyone but myself. I need to learn to kill my own (animal, vegetable, bacterial, insectoid, fruit or fungal) with more elegance. I don't think the eel wanted to be dinner or art in the first place. I owed it a more talented execution.
I cannot apologise to the eel because I doubt it would accept an apology. I can not thank it for providing me dinner or art materials, because I doubt it would not say 'you were welcome.' I took the eel in an unskilled way and kept the waste of my meal for The Brainus/Analolly Complex. In the future, I can only try to sharpen my skill set and take responsibility for killing well what I plan to consume. I will also try to welcome the hunger of the living consumers of my body (animal, vegetable, bacterial, insectioid, fruit or fungal) when they come to feast on my inevitable temporary-ness, my becoming food for others.
Conceived and executed by Adam Zaretsky while an Honorary Visiting Researcher at SymbioticA, the School of Anatomy and Human Biology's Art & Science Collaborative Lab in The University of Western Australia, Perth
Professor Adam Zaretsky is a bio-artist, working as a research affiliate in Arnold Demain's Laboratory for Industrial Microbiology and Fermentation in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Department of Biology. He received a Master of Fine Arts in 1999 from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he studied and researched with 'transgenic' artist Eduardo Kac. Since then, he has worked with such pioneers of bio-art as Joe Davis, Oron Catts and Ionat Zurr. Zaretsky also taught an art and biology studio class in fall 2001 as a visiting artist at San Francisco State University. Besides the bio-art installations on which he is working, Zaretsky has created a large body of digital artworks, collage and photography.