The Man from Monsanto: he say no!



I don’t much like eating pineapples – they make my mouth hurt, but I do admire their stylish form. In a previous post I briefly mentioned Wedgwood pineapple and cauliflower ware and how  much I have been influenced by them.


I do think this coffee pot is most succulent with that perfect match of iron oxide honey and copper carbonate (with a hint of chrome oxide) green glaze. Thinking about pineapples and what I might do with them reminded me of this advert from the 1980’s  featuring the “Man From Del Monte”. In the (admittedly slightly racist) ad the man would visit villages to sample their fruit to see if they were good enough to be included in his company’s drinks. The tagline shouted jubilantly by a grateful peon was, “The man from Del Monte, he say ‘Yes!'”‘ it became somewhat of a catchphrase at the time.



I know it’s a bit crap but it makes  me snigger and, if you spend too much time thinking about genetically modified crops, it isn’t too big a mental leap to change Del Monte to Monsanto. And that started me thinking about what I could do to an unsuspecting pineapple.


I mean, it’s just asking to be tampered with, and then I found a dolly stuck in a bush behind a block of flats.


And here she is after I’ve done a little ‘surgery’ on her. Normally I never use doll imagery in my work, I see it too often in students’ work and frankly my dear, what can one do that Bellmer hasn’t done already?

But I thought I might allow myself a little fun. So I made some casts.



From there it was a simple matter to insert them into various vegetable forms.


I like the image above because it clearly shows the process, you can even see my finger marks where I have pressed the clay into place and the scored surface waiting for the next ‘scale’.


I used a very similar glaze technique to Wedgwood, with the addition of a flesh toned underglaze. I was quite pleased with the results.


And talking of pineapple influenced art work, what about these delicious looking pineapple creams? I might be tempted to break my no pineapple rule for them.


Or these divinely bonkers pineapple towers? I wish I lived in one.


Just like Spongebob Squarepants.


In the pineapple ocean no one can hear you scream.


Incidentally, the pineapple was eaten after I finished with it.


But not by me.


Penelope Matheson



About pennimania

Artist, entomologist, grumbler.
This entry was posted in Boboli Personality, ceramics, Pleionexia, The Vegetable Tortures and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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