Wednesday, September 01, 2010
No Meat, Decision Portrait Series
(Above: No Meat, Decision Portrait. Stitched word: Vegetarian. Hand stitched. Xylene photo transfer on tea-stained muslin. 25" x 19" unframed; 31" x 25" framed. Click on image to enlarge.)
One of the most basic decisions everyone makes every day is about food. What to eat? When to eat? How much to eat? These are questions we often answer without too much thought. Yet, food is essential to life. Decisions about food are important. Not everyone makes the same decisions.
Increasingly there are more vegetarians in our society. One source includes: A “Vegetarianism in America” study shows that 3.2 percent of U.S. adults, or 7.3 million people, follow a vegetarian-based diet. Approximately 0.5 percent, or 1 million, of those are vegans, who consume no animal products at all. In addition, 10 percent of U.S., adults, or 22.8 million people, say they largely follow a vegetarian-inclined diet. The study also found that nearly 12 million non-vegetarians were considering this dietary choice. People become vegetarian for a number of reasons: environmental, ethical, religious, food-safety, animal welfare, personal health, and both weight lose and weight maintenance reasons.
(Above: No Meat, detail. Click on image to enlarge.)
Simply put, being a vegetarian is a choice....a simple decision to enjoy a meatless diet. The nice lady who posed for the piece made this decision at age 16....which was 42 years ago! She doesn't eat meat. I stitched her portrait in an equally simple, straight-forward manner using plain shirt buttons for a boarder and a single word on the fabric. I hope those seeing the work think about their personal dietary choices.
One of the nicest things about this series of work is getting a "thank you" note from the actual participants! My "vegetarian" wrote an email of support, thanking me for the moments of reflection on her personal life decisions that the process of creating this piece brought about! The honor was mine!
Posted by Susan Lenz at 10:52 AM