Cynthia Karalla is the hardest working artist I know.
With her great determination and tenacious energy,
she is an irrefutable force of nature!"
KARALLA's - FAT LANDS by Anthony Haden-Guest
Edited by Eleanor Whitney
In her newest project Fat Lands New York and Italy-based artist Cynthia Karalla explores the beauty and repulsion of physical, spiritual and material excess. .
Karalla created Part I of the piece, entitled Straight Up Fat, by placing a slab of human fat under her homemade microscope camera. Though both psychical and metaphorical fat is in abundance in American culture, as she set out to create the project Karalla was afraid that actual fat might be difficult to obtain. Working with a doctor, and with the consent of one of his patients, she was able to obtain half a pound of fat and a slab of skin that were removed from the belly area during an operation. The fat itself was pale pink, while the skin was bright white. “How ironic,” Karalla thought, reflecting on the fat she had procured, that while only the rich can afford to delete fat though surgery, by creating a saleable work of art she could sell it back to them. To shoot the fat Karalla set up the microscope camera in her small, Manhattan backyard. As she waited for the sun in order to have complete control of the light she began to play with the discarded objects that had inadvertently collected in the yard. She built a setting to play make-believe and found a toy soldier that looked like Columbus. “Land! I’ve discovered the Fat!,” she said to herself. When the sun fell behind the skyscrapers and she could have her way with the light Karalla focused her camera on the slab of human fat in front of her. Just as she started to click away a tiny mosquito that was too small to see with the naked eye flew into the fat. A serendipitous artistic moment had struck. She filmed the process of the bug sucking off the fat, an act of over consumption which soon ended its short life.