奔殉 Bēn Xùn
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D1387 Production Studio
Renée Van Halm + Pietro Widmer Graduation Award for Visual Arts – Honourable Mention
奔殉 Bēn Xùn
11.8” h x 11” φ (Large cake); 10.5” h x 8.8” φ (Small cake)
A dessert table by fusing a ceramic dessert with a sculpture of a female sexual organ combined with wool. Combine the female organ with various desserts in different forms.
The phenomenon of “Chastity Martyrdom” women in China’s Ming and Qing dynasties inspired my creation. This phenomenon refers to the social and cultural ideal of female purity and chastity that was highly valued during that time. The phenomenon of “Chastity Martyrdom” struck me. In such social circumstances, young girls who had lost their fiancés due to various circumstances, such as death, becoming a monk, or going missing, would often choose to remain faithful to their fiancés for the rest of their lives. This was seen as a sign of their unwavering loyalty and devotion. In some extreme cases, these girls would even commit suicide to demonstrate their commitment. This act is called “奔殉” (Bēn Xùn), which means “rushing to die” or “rushing to martyrdom.” This phenomenon was closely linked to Confucianism, which emphasized loyalty, filial piety, and obedience to authority. Promoting and celebrating female chastity led young women to devote themselves to it.
Female chastity has been a plight of women across regions and eras and continues to be so in different parts of the world. In my work, I blend Eastern stories of chastity with desserts from different Western countries to tell the stories of women persecuted by chastity.
The concept of female chastity has been a significant issue throughout history and across cultures. In many societies, women have been expected to maintain their purity as a virtue, often to the point of being oppressed or persecuted. This expectation is often linked to patriarchal values prioritizing male control and domination over women’s bodies and sexuality. Combining Eastern stories of chastity with Western desserts may help to bridge cultural gaps and draw attention to the universal nature of issues faced by women across different regions and eras.
Ceramics, Wool, Metal fork
10” h x 14.6” φ
奔殉 Bēn Xùn is the work based on the extension of Maiden’s Cake.