Heather Komus is a Winnipeg-based artist working with embroidery, found objects, plant matter, and animal matter (such as intestines, feathers, and hair) to explore the body as a permeable ecosystem. Fascinated by infestation and infection—the way microbes and spores penetrate the skin and colonize organs—her creations are like maps to a subdivided and multiplied body, represented by the sporadic growth of egg-like structures, fungi, and an embroidered termite queen (which Komus accurately calls “the ultimate symbol of fertility”). The result is a fascinating reimagining of identity, linking the body to the environment and life with death, thereby challenging notions of sole subjectivity. Speaking of her choice of materials, Komus states, “I believe an experience with organic matter is like the sting of an insect—it is a genuinely raw and present moment with the body and the natural world.” Visit her website to view more of her incredible work.
Images 1–5 ("Gorge and Grow") © Lindsey Bond Images 6–7 ("Paraben Pustules") © Lasha Mowchun Images 8–9 ("Memory and Matter") © Karen Asher