Tail Composition I

Name: Tail Composition I

Category: Instalation

Material: Horsetail and polyester resin

Date: 2011

The first in many works with horsetails and horsehair.

Contemplations December 2021:

Time flies, I made this iconic piece already 10 years ago! My first ever horsetail artwork!
It was at Minerva Fine Art School that this piece was brought to life, during a project week called 25% discount.

At first I didn’t know what to do with the theme 25% discount, because my mind was filled with articles that I had just read. We were in the middle of the economic crisis that started in 2008, and people couldn’t afford the upkeep of their own horses. There were many articles about people selling their horses to slaughterhouses. And I was horrified and heartbroken…

That was when my late Art teacher Bernadet ten Hove said why don’t you transform that pain into an object of art. So I went to those slaughterhouses and found many horsetails, they said it didn’t have any purpose and was just waste material. All the other parts are for consumption or for medical students and farrier students. 

In my mind I was outraged, ‘’you call a part of a horse waste material?’’ The tail is a vital and essential part of the horse, to express themselves and to swoosh away unwanted visitors like bugs and flies. And at that moment I felt like the unwanted visitor, humankind as an unwanted visitor. We as humans decide to ‘’keep’’ horses, stable them and ride them. We take a responsibility of another life, and to let that end in a slaughterhouse… 

I wanted the human interaction with my artwork to become one of thought, and maybe some horror or disgust because that makes people think and second guess themselves. 

We humans can be a good factor in the life of animals, but also a bad factor. And it is good to be reminded of that sometimes. We have a responsibility when we choose to ‘’keep’’ animals…