Ready for the rabbit hole? ...
Once upon a time there was a version of me, who could eat everything. And there were the 'villi', the millions of tiny finger-like protrusions, living in my gut. They quietly absorbed nutrients from the food I ate, and kept me happy for decades.
Time passed, and my villi became sensitive to certain food elements like gluten, lactose and fructose.
Machina. 2021. Oil on canvas, 68 x 51 cm
Our tale turned into a horror story that kept getting darker. Eating became surreal.
After all, how could healthy food, like fruit and vegetables be so bad for my villi, while chips and chocolate were tolerable?
Fermentation. 2021. Oil on canvas, 68 x 51 cm. Appropriated from Juan Sanchez Cotan, Quince, Cabbage, Melon and Cucumber (1600).
I could no longer enjoy social interactions, sport, travel and I increasingly confined myself to the walls of my apartment with bloating, diarrhoea, nausea, headaches and brain fog.
Fasting. 2021. Oil on canvas, 68 x 51 cm. Appropriated from Paul Cezanne, The Basket of Apples (1893)
Memento mori. Katalin Horompo. 2021. Oil on canvas, 68 x 51 cm
It took me years to realise my villi’s health was my health and we were on this journey together.
At the bottom of a dark box sits a well-lit jewelry box decorated with the flower ‘bittersweet’ (meaning ‘truth’). In it sits a breast implant, and two surgical tools.
According to Greek mythology, when Pandora opened the box, all the evils flew out and only hope remained.
Is it the evil of egotism that is unleashed here, or hope for youth and beauty that is found?
Response to the exhibition titled 'Coffee' at the Darwin Visual Arts Association.
Pastel and charcoal on Art Spectrum Colourfix paper, 50 x 80 cm.
Read about child labor used for our coffee culture on The Guardian website.