I Am The Animal is an multimedia art exhibit by artist Lenore Malen that is currently on display at Koppelman Gallery at Tufts University, through April 1. But even if — like me — you are not in the Boston-area and cannot make it to this groundbreaking exhibit, you need to know about it anyway. Explicitly combining philosophy with art, this installation takes a powerful look into, according to the website, “the way humans anthropomorphize non-human animals and a plea against the industrialized treatment of them.”
I found it fascinating to listen to the short audio recordings of both the Introduction to Lenore Malen, as well as the artist herself speaking about I Am The Animal, including why and how she created the installation. (Take 4 minutes out today and listen to both of these.) What started as a beekeeping hobby, grew into a fascination with these animals, and then further grew into a deep, profound interest in the relationships between humans and animals, and “reverse anthropomorphism.” Malen says, “There is no human, and there never has been. The human is not a given, but is made in an ongoing process of technological and anthropological evolution.”
According to the website, in I Am The Animal, “Original footage is intercut with archival and found footage, beginning in a documentary fashion then moving into imagery alluding to genetics and robotics.” As you probably guessed from the multimedia resources we offer with Our Hen House, I’m a fan of using many disciplines in the creation of art and change, vis a vis animals. It seems to me that Lenore Malen’s installation embodies that.
If you’re in the Tufts area (lucky you!), there will be a panel discussion of I Am The Animal taking place on Wednesday, March 28 from 4:00-6:00 p.m.