it takes time to process unintened harm

poison ivy leaves gathered from Chicagoland parks, locally processed lard


In Plants and Animals: On Monsters, Cyborgs and Other Hybrid Creatures curated by Rebecca Ladida, In/habit Roving Art Series

The leaves of poison ivy plants are pressed onto a substrate of lard to draw out urushiol in the manner if the scent exctraction method enfleurage.

Urushiol is produced by the poison ivy plant not as a defense mechanism, but as a way to retain water and to protect the plant against fungal infections. For some people, contact with poison ivy can cause a reaction known as cell-mediated immune response. The urushiol binds to the membrane of skin cells and interferes with their ability to communicate with other cells. Exposing oneself to poison ivy will actually make the reaction worse over time. It has a cumulative effect, causing increasingly severe reactions with each level of exposure.


Interview with Dana Bassett and Ryan Peter Miller, Bad at Sports, Episode 637, WLPN Lumpen Radio, Chicago, May 30 2018