I use my hand for craft but you use your hand for something else
Dirt Date, a group show by ceramics & glass M1 Konstfack
Wednesday 13/1-10 Konstfack
The bulimic craft session
I work with bulimia and anorexia in this craft project. Mainly because they are diseases that are really common amongst women, not only young girls, although it often starts at a young age, but anorexia and bulimia are diseases that follow you through your life. And even if you don’t develop one of these diseases, many women are suffering from eating disorders. And how you decide whether it is a ED or not of course depends on how you analyze it.
It also depends on that a lot of my friends are suffering from these diseases, even now when they are grown up. It is often really shame full to talk about this, specially sense a lot of my friends come from a feminist movement where we are very aware of these problems in society. For me this is a typical example of how the patriarchy works with women and our health.
Bulimia is often pictures with women who are eating and then throwing up. It is young women who eats loads of food at the same time, then throws up in the toilette. It is quite often pictured as a connection to the fashion industry amongst other topics.
We all know the results of anorexia and bulimia, what it does to the body. When it comes to anorexia it of course easier to see, because of the weight loss and the lack of eating, but regarding bulimia it is different. People who suffer from bulimia hide it very well, but often can you see signs on the teeth because of all the vomiting. This is just one of many things that happen to the body. A couple of years ago I read an article about researching doctors who predicted that so many more women in a whole generation would go senile in advance, because of lack of fat in the brain, as a result of these diseases, a constant diet.
Bulimic persons of course use their hands to throw up and this is where I continue my craft project. Through conversations with a woman who have been suffering from bulimia for more than 10 years, I now know which the three fingers she uses to throw up. This has given her small calluses on her hand, not notable if you don’t look for it. The calluses are developed where her teeth are constantly are pounding in to her hand when she throws up.
To hide food is common for people who suffer from anorexia. Coming to bulimia, they hide food to, but for different reasons, to eat it later on. A lot of the stories I heard through the years, tells that the food is hidden in plants for example, so no one will notice that the food isn’t eaten. But when it comes to throwing up, is it not only done in the toilette, sense it’s pretty easy to get discovered. So people with bulimia also throw up outside, in their gardens or at other places where they think they won’t be discovered. Outside, the vomit is anonymous and can disappear with the rain or eaten by an animal.
My sculptures are made by controlled patterns, forced by the power of a controlling hand, with a direction. I’ve used the same three fingers that the woman I talked to, throws up with to make vomits out of porcelain.