PIG 05049 Christien Meindertsma. http://www.christienmeindertsma.com
With the project pig 05049, Christien Meindertsma wants to regain understanding of processes that have become so distant in the industrialization. In this work, but also in her other works she tries to make the lines between raw products, producers and consumers visible again that have become so invisible in our increasingly globalized world. PIG 05049 is a research she has done about one pig, she followed all the pieces around the world to see what would become from them. There were a lot of surprising products, that she all gathered in a book called PIG 05049. http://www.christienmeindertsma.com/index.php?/books/pig-05049/
The product and exhibition shows the public the hidden process behind a large amount of our daily used products. It makes a part of the economy transparent again. That transparency is for a big amount lost in the process of the industrialization. A reaction to a ted talk she did was; she brings us the information we don't know about our everyday products, but do we really want to know all this information? https://tedx.amsterdam/2009/12/video-christien-meindertsma-on-pig05049/
The project aligns perfectly with the class open design. Because this project is all about opening up the process behind our products from one material. She shows us what we cannot see because of the invisibility of today’s economy. The project is contextual if you see it from her perspective, she shows something that a everyday person can’t see but they want to know it, or maybe they do not want to know like said in the ted talk. The artistic aspect of this project is in the way of presentation. How she forms the exhibition and the publication are done in an artistic way. Also her own view and interests made her do this project, she might do it more from her own perspective then to show the public what happens with a pig after it’s killed. In her project she uses different resources to track the pieces of the pig, but when it comes to the public she does not ask for participation. The only thing the public does is look at the work or read the book and then the participation starts. The people that have seen or heard about the exhibition are going to talk about it, they are going to wander about what else is in our food and everyday products. This way, she tries to create some transparency in our industrialized world. This is also the transformative aspect. It is the base for new perspectives and it offers the opportunity for critical reflection. Because it is about a product that everyone in the world knows, maybe they do not eat it directly, but everyone has come in to contact with something from a pig once in his life. She brings it in that way closer to everyone.
The project creates awareness in the public , but it is also informational. The project has started with the artist herself and not in the community. So with the schedule in minde we made in the lesson this project will be in the middel of allo-relational and auto-relational and somewhere a bit more to the subversive side. Because she is not working particularly with the community but she is not totally auto-relational. Also she is not completely against the current power, but with the project she activates the people to think about the daily things en to do not take everything for granted.
The reason why I think this project is a good social project is because it has three of the four core qualities that are written in the “art in transition manifesto”. But in my opinion the only thing that is missing is the real connection with the public. The public is important to the project because without them the project would not be relevant, but the public could be more involved in the whole proces, for instance to work together with a community to search for the end stations for the pieces of the pig. Let the people work with you as an artist so it can become so much more than a collection of different products with pieces of a pig inside. That is simplistic but it is clear what i mean. The good thing about this project is that she tries to make a difference, she tries to get the transparency back that we used to have before the industrialization. This is something what I value highly, because I think a huge amount of money en ideas get lost in the proces. We can work efficient with energy and all that kind of stuff but not in this sort of situations. That is something Christien tries to change. What i see for this project is to make it even more extensive with even more materials. So in the long run every product we use is completely transparent. This can be done trough open source technologies and sharing of all our information. But this takes a lot of responsibility that comes with it.