Bee Bread

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Media: 
Resin and Wax
Media: 
Glass
Media: 
Perspex
Media: 
Wire
Media: 
Honeycombs
Media: 
Wood
Media: 
Glue
Media: 
Rooibos Teabags
Media: 
Chequebook Stubs
Size: 
2.5m by 1.8m
Created: 
2002

This artwork developed out of an appreciation for South African honeybees and thier contribution to our society. The mixture of honey and pollen is called bee bread and is the food for most larvae and bees. The title Bee Bread refers to bees in nature and bread in human industry ('bread' as in both baked and cash). South African's killer bees, whose honeycomb is used in the artwork, preoduce arguably the best honey in the world. The parallels between human and bee industry are extraordinary. In some sense, the complexity of their society rivals that of our own. Both employ thousands of workers and consequently support life. Workers, bee and hum, create products which are neccessary for the continuing existance of both beehive and company. In both industries there is a division of labour where different workers specialise in different tasks. Complex communications are exchanged constantly in both environments. All are affected by the climate - be it weather or finance - and produice accordingly. In an exemplary manner, the honeybees take frim the earth. They support and provide for one another, yet they give more than they take. The honeybees's critical contribution to plant survival, especially to agriculure through pollination, is crucial to our own survival. Morever, bees produce pollen, propolis, royal jelly and bee venom, all of which play increasing roles in health foods and alternative medicine. Bees also produce honeycomb, the hexagonal design of which is a fantastic feet of engineering and functionality, studied by scientists, technologists, engineers and architects. In the artwork, honeycombs represent honeybee output and are a metaphor for human industry. They show engineering and construction, with homes for larvae and deposits of golden honey. The structual and financial benefits of bee keeping are shown in the inclusion of hundreds of chequebook stubs. THese personal records of day-to-day finance are arranged on a curved wire grid, likewise representing engineering and construction. The Rooibos teabag material, which drapes the chequebooks strubs, is stained with the indigenous health tea it usually contains. This middle piece is flanked on wither side by killer bee honeycombs, likewise indigenous and healing. Finally, the entire artwork shows appreciation for South African bess, highlighting their judicuious, symbiotic use of rich natural resources. Bees are the perfect role model for corporations - they perpetuate the cycle of life. The artwork is in three separate section. Each section is condecutively placed against a wall, suspended by cables attached to the ceiling. Classification of Honeybees: Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Arthropoda, Class Insecta Order Hymenoptera, Family Apiidae, Genus Apis, Species Apis mellifera. (Koning, Ross, E. "Honeybee Biology" 1994. S.v. Plant Physology Website. Available online: http://koning.easternct.edu/plant_human/bees/bees.html)