The Eating of Humans

Neo Futurist Dinner 08 - with Gwen van der Zwan, Krisztina Czika and Bryce Steba

1 May 2019
4 May 2019

For the development of this 5-course Neo Futurist Dinner we invited artists Gwen van der Zwan, Krisztina Czika and chef Bryce Steba to collaborate around the theme of eating humans.

This project was born out of sheer curiosity, why does consumption of the self raise so much resistance? Can it be tasty? Is it contagious? Is it ethical?

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Guest eating bread, oil, salt and blood - Course 1

Eating Humans is the 8th edition of the Neo Futurist Dinner series and is organised by Mediamatic. For these events artists and chefs are invited to arrange a banquet to discuss the future of food and Art. Some of the more science-based questions from this experiment are answered in the F.A.Q list below. However, the most interesting ones will be left for attendees to chew over.

Our chef Bryce Steba has designed a menu where body substances play an important role. Attendees of the dinner will be given a few options as to how to contribute: drawing their own blood, waxing the hair off of their skin or filing their nails into the dish. Onion-induced tears may also be harvested.

We want to challenge our guests to think about their daily consumption of animals (human or other) as well as give them the intimate experience of tasting themselves and maybe others if they wish.

Cooking with body substances is a challenge because on a first glance it seems like a sensational act. Gastronomically ambitious Steba bypasses this pitfall by creating a high-quality elegant meal. It is no way intended to shock but primarily to be tasty and to reconsider some old beliefs we hold to be true.

Gwen van der Zwan: “An important role for art is that it allows us to talk about subjects that are socially unaccepted or difficult to verbalize. When one chooses to act in an extreme way or cannot justify their deeds, you can consider: aren’t most of our acts of this nature?”

The dinner will be opened with The Bloody Mary performance by Isabel Burr Raty. In this performance Burr Raty will introduce her research on the power of female ejaculate and enhance the bloody Mary recipe. 

To avoid judicial misunderstandings Stichting Mediamatic can only serve the blood meals to those that have donated blood. Those that do not donate can enjoy a plant-based meal. It goes without saying that guests are welcome to taste each other’s dishes. Exchanging bodily fluids is the responsibility of each participant, and you can enjoy the meal fully without doing so. Note: A guest is in no way forced to donate their body substances. You are welcome to come and enjoy the meal without the human extras.

We’ve noticed that there are a lot of questions surrounding the eating of humans in general, particularly the consumption of blood. Many of these questions we also answer in our F.A.Q list.