Hippocrates’ theory of the four humours sees the body as made up of four basic substances: yellow bile, blood, phlegm and black bile, each linked to a specific temperament. The theory inspired blood-letting, a common medical practice aimed at restoring both physical and mental health by bringing these bodily fluids back into balance. Black bile, the fictional of these four fluids, is linked to the humour of melancholy. Cook Me—Black Bile references this historical medical practice by proposing a new form of cooking, guided by one’s personal metabolism. With the right ingredients and recipe, one could perhaps finely balance the feeling of melancholy; through cooking for and from one’s own body. In this work a special cooking instrument allows a leech to parasite on the forearm of the artist. Using the satiated leech the artist prepares a blood mousse accompanied by oyster mushroom, a redcurrant sauce and blood sorrel.
COOK ME— BLACK BILE
TUUR VAN BALEN
About the Artist
Tuur Van Balen uses design to explore the political implications of emerging technologies. Through designing and experimenting with new interactions, he constructs thoughtprovoking new realities.