Mathilde Roussel-Giraudy created these human-like sculptures out of soil, wheat seed, and recycled metal. The longer the piece is displayed, the longer the grass grows out of the sculpture.
Roussel-Giraudy’s intention with the project is to make us more aware of what we put into our bodies, and how our choices in food affect the world around us.
With this quote in mind, and looking at the moving image that shows the time lapse of the sculptures, you’ll notice that the sculptures grow ‘fat’ as the grass grows. Similar to how a human being grows fat as they consume more food items.
I found this piece really interesting, for a couple of reasons. Roussel-Giraudy wants the individual to be mindful of the food they eat, and this resounds for me, as a vegetarian. I am a vegetarian because I am against the suffering that animals go through in the process of being farmed for meat, I dislike the idea of eating another ‘thing’, and because of the environmental impacts of meat farming. In this regard, this piece connects with me, as I am aware of what I chose to eat and not to eat in regards to the world around me.
I also really like the way the sculptures look at the very beginning, before the germination of the seeds. They look burnt out, almost cremated. Kind of like the bodies of the Pompeii victims, forever frozen in time, covered in ash. They also look like they might be in pain, because of the feelings and memories they evoke in me. The bodies do not seem to be peaceful, they are contorted in ways that would be painful to a normal human being. They cringe and cower and fall. Originally, these are not beautiful sculptures, but painful ones. But when the seeds grow grass, they turn into something beautiful. Similar to the way a human body can go from simply a dead body, into nature. There are options in your burial that your ashes can be mixed into a biodegradable potting device, which will eventually grow into a tree.
While this interpretation may not be the one that Mathilde Roussel-Giraudy intended, I still think it is an interesting way to look at another artist’s piece of work.
I know this isn’t part of anything we have studied in Creative Arts, but once I stumbled over this artist, I wanted to share.