Eat Me: Transforming detritus into delectables

Parisian street artist Lor-K surprises passersby with huge sculptural food-inspired artworks.

As part of her continuous experimental project Eat Me, the sculpture artist Lor-K created huge, cartoonish food items out of scrapped domestic materials that she finds on the streets of Paris.

Lor-K explores the city on her scooter. She is constantly on the lookout for discarded practical materials (which usually come in the form of abandoned mattresses and cushions) with a set of tools on hand to get to work at the drop of a hat.

She cuts up, spray paints and glues together whatever she finds - foam, pillow stuffing, layered cushioning or any other kind of found fabric - in the shape of vibrant appetising foodstuffs. Her massive snack creations include pizza slices, pieces of sushi, sandwiches, waffles and cake.

Lor-K’s sculptures have an effective balance of conspicuousness and believability. Her food-inspired artworks are large enough to catch the eye of a pedestrian from afar and they feature convincing details (such as multiple toppings on a pizza or the dark shavings atop a chocolate cake).

Speaking to Who’d Have Thought, Lor-K describes the motivation of Eat Me and her interest in exploring the concept of domestic waste.

“With all my projects, the goal is to attract attention to human waste. Being used to working with abandoned objects to create sculptures, I wanted to appropriate mattresses. These objects are very common in our streets, few people are interested in them. They carry the stigma of their past lives; their stains and defilements make them undesirable waste.

They are rarely picked up to be used again and attract disgust and ignorance. Abandoned mattresses call to mind the precarity of people living in the street. Representing our own waste in food is a metaphor,” she says.

Lor-K goes on to describe a distinction between her work and what many consider ‘upcycling’ or sustainable design. She views Eat Me rather as the whimsical and final glorification of waste materials.

“Upcycling and sustainability are movements which interest me. But even so, my work does not depend on them. I often have the sensation of destroying objects (to let them shine one last time) rather than recycling them.

Creations I make outside are ephemeral. I do not wish to conserve them, their place is outside. I like to create volumes in the street with simple techniques,” she was quoted as saying.