The Human Cheese Shop

April 28 - May 1, 2011

Thursday April 28, 7pm-10pm OPENING TASTING EVENT
Friday, April 29, 5pm-9pm
Saturday April 30, 1pm-5pm
Sunday May 1, 2pm-6pm CLOSING TASTING EVENT at 4pm

"From one perspective, a cyborg world is…about the final appropriation of women's bodies in a masculinist orgy of war. From another perspective, a cyborg world might be about lived social and bodily realities in which people are not afraid of their joint kinship with animals and machines, not afraid of permanently partial identities and contradictory standpoints. The political struggle is to see from both perspectives at once because each reveals both dominations and possibilities unimaginable from the other vantage point. Single vision produces worse illusions than double vision or many-headed monsters."

- Donna Harraway, Cyborg Manifesto

Image of Human Cheese at Michael Mut Art Gallery, New York

On Thursday April 28 Miriam Simun transforms the exterior of Michael Mut Gallery into The Lady Cheese Shop, inviting visitors inside to taste Human Cheese, cheese made from human milk. Inside the gallery Simun depicts an exploration of the complex and messy truth of what it means to make food from human body products. Visitors will move from imaginary fantasy of such a proposal to the very real process of procuring virus-free human milk, and turning it into cheese. Three delicious different human cheeses will be available (made from the milk of three different women), accented with food pairings inspired by the terroir of each cheese, created by Chef Sarah Hymanson. Over cheese and wine participants will be invited to consider and discuss this immodest proposal.

In creating Human Cheese, Simun raises questions about the ways in which biotechnology progress transforms the possibilities for the human body as a site of production and commodity, through a radical reframing of the possibilities of urban food production. Technologies that make use of the body in strange and intimate ways come to be accepted by societies and markets for their life-giving promises. Amidst a crisis of our food systems, the use of hyper-local reproductive excess located here in New York City offers a real possibility to 'give life.' By inviting participants to taste human cheese, Simun appeals to the full range of human senses to consider this proposal.

Human Cheese is Miriam Simun's final work as a part of NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program. www.miriamsimun.com