by Lindsay Kelley
Plumpy’nut (“plump” plus “peanut”) is a peanut-based humanitarian aid food developed by André Briend and licensed by Nutriset, a French company that specializes in therapeutic food. Plumpy’nut requires no water or refrigeration, making it ideal for extreme environments that provide little support for malnourished people. Lindsay Kelly’s recipe for Plumpiñon plays with the form of the branded Plumpy’nut starvation food to provoke thought about the legacy of colonialism and contemporary political hegemonic forces that impinge on the global food system.
As a remembrance of local famine foods around the world, Plumpiñon promotes one plant seed native to the US Southwest, the piñon nut. Plumpiñon represents both a formal inquiry into the structure of humanitarian aid food and an investigation of reciprocal relationships between settler colonies and indigenous peoples. As both a starvation food and a metaphor for the body, the piñon’s pale sweet meat mirrors the flesh of those consuming it.
Read Recipe One: Plumpiñon on Google books
Lindsay Kelley’s art practice and scholarship explore how the experience of eating changes when technologies are being eaten. She is working on her first book, Bioart Kitchen, which investigates unlikely aesthetic sites and alternate histories in order to better understand how the artistic manipulation of biological materials shapes food systems and practices of cooking and eating. Kelley is an Associate Lecturer at the College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales, where she is affiliated with the National Institute for Experimental Art. She is also an International Research Fellow at the Center for Fine Art Research, Birmingham City University.