Emily Rose Larsen

Beastly considers how removed we have become from our natural selves and connection to our base animalism. Larsen felt this powerfully after giving birth for the first time. Having just gone through arguably one of the processes that we share most closely with our beastly brethren she felt disjoint between what was happening to her body and what the medical crew was demanding of her. After researching the history of modern birthing practices she was not surprised to learn that what we have come to understand as normal and good birthing practices actually came about through a desire by a blossoming medical field to discredit and undermine the powerfully effective midwives and return that power to men with medical training. As a result, birthing has warped away from the best natural approach to an incredibly intense and traumatic event to the best approach deemed by a for-profit medical system by men trained by a field that mostly studies the bodies of men. We cling to our superiority to animals, but the things we exalt in ourselves are relatively trivial when compared to the things we share. In beastly Larsen creates still lives of fabricated flora and fauna with living plants and images she took of taxidermied beasts at the Museum of Natural History. Contemplating the absurd way in which we simultaneously idolize and fetishize nature, despite our deep need to distinguish ourselves from it.

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