Rafael Perez Evans, an art student from London, presented a controversial and provocative work in his thesis project. A week ago, the young Hispano-Welshman artist exhibited 'Grounding', an artistic piece in which he used 240,000 carrots to draw attention to the fall of the prices of agricultural products, at the doors of Goldsmiths College.
"I remember that, when I was quite young, people were very angry and upset that the price of lemons had fallen so much that it was costing farmers more money to produce them than to stop producing them," stated Evans, whose Spanish ancestors were agricultural producers. "In protest to the low lemon prices, many farmers threw away their lemons creating a kind of yellow sea. I think that was the first moment I realized how the government's devaluation and international trade affected farmers."
Despite his intentions, his work of art was not well-received by all spectators. In fact, a group of students called it a waste of food and decided to start collecting the carrots and using them for different dishes. According to this group of students, the cooked food is commercialized and the earnings are sent to a solidarity fund for social organizations.
The response to Perez Evans' work was uploaded to an Instagram account that promotes carrot-based products. "Lewisham is one of the poorest boroughs in London and this mass dumping of carrots at Goldsmiths is beyond insensitive... It's a massive slap in the face," states a post in the account.
Evans, meanwhile, tried to justify his decision by arguing that the carrots he used were rejected by the food industry and that, after the exhibition, the vegetables would be used to feed animals.