Fruiting Bodies, 2020
Fruiting Bodies is a significant and timely development within Dudek’s work, in which her creative engagement with organic life steps out of the anthropocentric into the vast realms of the more-than-human.The last decade has, of course, seen a desperate deepening of cultural interest in more-than-human life, a sad corollary to the intensification of anthropogenic climate change, habitat loss and collapse in biodiversity across the world.
They are shot in the simple, slick and promotional style of product photography. Each subject is presented for our inspection, up-close and alone, against a neutral studio background, as if they were the latest smartphone or sneaker.The mushrooms richly repay this VIP treatment.They are voluptuous, alien and profoundly present.Their tumescent fans shade from white and tan browns into pink, fleshy tones, striking a subtle and disturbing note of the erotic. Disturbing, but mushrooms are the fruiting bodies of fungi, part of the sexual phase of the fungal life cycle, the place where spores are produced. As such they are, for the broader fungal body of which each one is a part, zones of intense interaction with the more-than-fungal world.
Within Dudek’s latest, constellation of works, Fruiting Bodies are of fundamental significance. They are her symbols and examples par excellence of dynamic, organic actors able to transcend and breach the thresholds, barriers and constraints that structure the physical world.
I - VI
C-Type Prints on Hahnemuhle Baryta Archival Paper
Wood Coated Aluminium Nielsen Frame w/ Museum Glass
30 x 40 cm
Edition of 2 + 1AP