With the support of the Institute of Queer Ecology , Noam Youngrak Son has developed the workshop ‘Chimera Gastronomy: Malleable flesh, amalgamated bodies, and plastic kinship’. In the workshop, a group works individually and collectively on a large malleable body consisting of dough. During the kneading, identities, gender and notions surrounding ethics are discussed and reflected. The co-created edible sculpture is thus a translation of our collective and personal struggles, interspecies discoveries and political feelings around bodies in this society. The result of the workshop will be exhibited as a sculptural form. According to Son, this result is a so-called Chimera: a living being that arises from cell mixing.
During the first edition workshop hosted as part of the program for RE_NATURE festival, the participants hybridized eel, dodo, octopus, lichen, whale, nekton, cat into a chimera. The flesh, materialized using edible ingredients, comprehensively represented the following political-cultural-ecological discussions: endocrinological condition shaped by migration, extinction caused by colonialism, fluctuating chromatophores blurring the notion of race, symbiotic cohabitation, the polarization of scales. By using this variety of flesh, we speculatively constructed organs that tell stories: An anus not for defecation but for olfactory communication, a selfish heart that only pumps blood for itself, non-binary genitals, an ear that hears sufferings, an organ that consumes pain and excretes joy. Eventually, the body parts are combined into a fictional creature, later 3D scanned and digitally animated.
The second edition of the workshop took place at Subbacultcha Amsterdam as a part of Sensual Havoc II exhibition. Hybridizing psychedelic plants, a seal, a sea cucumber, an otter, and a fungus resulted in this hyper-sensitive chimera with two asymmetric ears, one for horizontal and another for vertical hearing, residing in the rainy forest of Amsterdam.