Death of the Individual c. 2017 feather study
Ayam Cemani chicken, skinned head
The idea of the individual has become ambivalent, questioning if we should strive towards societal norms or celebrate singularity. Increasingly the West emphasises an impairment towards the value of individuality, pushing humanity to discard free thinking and acceptability and instead, to favour conformity, fashion and fad, particularly when considering appearance. The inclination to identify with supposedly benevolent norms in appearance through the media has instead led to savage abstractions that have crossed over from humans to non-humans.
The Indonesian breed of chicken translates as ‘Ayam’ meaning ‘chicken’ and ‘Cemani’ as ‘completely black’. The black skin, beaks, plumage, tongues, legs, toe nails, meat, bones, and organs of these birds is unique and the reason for the catalytic surge of popularity in the West. Considered ‘designer chickens‘ and commanding a premium selling price, the male Ayam Cemani in this body of work fell short, deemed bad breeding stock he was disposed of for 3 small white feathers.