MENTAL HEALTH. White House Studio Project, Toronto, Ontario. July 2018. Curated by Lauren Fournier.
To read the full curatorial essay, click here.
A memorial for the food I've let rot, victims of my negligence during episodes of depression and depersonalization. All the food displayed was sourced from my kitchen - true casualties of my avoidance.
Preserving them in resin became an act of meditative embalmment, and while coating them I often thought about the guilt/remorse/shame I've always felt in finding rotting food. The act of preservation became silly, because the intent was blatantly too late. It reminded me of serving penance in church, like saying five Hail Mary's to repent for fighting with my sister. The damage was done, all I could do now was make good of my failings.
With this in mind, carefully dressing and enshrining the rot became an act of atonement, or expiation - a way to make amends with the part of myself that neglects and festers. Within the context of creating the piece, I served the physical remnants of my illness - no longer hiding them in shame, but reclaiming them within an act of acceptance and self-forgiveness.