pig intro


FIELDCLUB was home to rescue pigs TJ45481 and TJ45482 (pedigree Cornish Large Blacks) during 2006-7. It didn't work out.

While these heavyweight omnivores resided at FIELDCLUB, several projects were undertaken concerning pigs. The most involved being the attempted re-establishment of the 'Pig Function' – as outlined in the illustrated paper Whey To Go (see below). The fieldclubbers failed in their attempt, which resulted in the untimely slaughter of TJ45481 and TJ45482.

pig that i am

TJ45482 and the pig that therefore I am
Mobile phone image

Image from a series documenting the destruction of TJ45482 and TJ45483 by free bullet.

Pig Function

Whey To Go: On The Hominid Appropriation of the Pig Function

Paper Co-authored by Robin Mackay, Kenna Hernly and Paul Chaney by invitation for Antennae – Journal of Nature in Visual Culture, subsequently published in Collapse - Journal of Philosophical Research and Development Vol VII 2010, and Ord & Bild - Sweden 2012. Illustrated by Paul Chaney

Sample text:

'Whatever the cosmetic resemblances, the secret of the pig’s close relationship with the human lies in the fact that both species boast an augmented potentiality with regard to feeding. Arguably the most important of our many shared traits is our one-chambered stomach and uncomplicated digestive tract, which grants us both membership to that exclusive class, omnivores. But whereas human omniverousness is culturally circumscribed, the pig exhibits an egregious want of critical faculties. Consequently, our feeling of proximity to the pig cannot but be accompanied by a simultaneous revulsion. This gustatory exaptation, which informs the derisory folk-image of the pig as an ignoble glutton ready to devour any and all waste product, nourishes our sense of its uncanny nature, as an animal at once disturbingly proximate to us yet falling drastically short of human refinement. And yet (excepting cultures where it is anathematised as a two-faced – non-ruminant but cloven-hoofed – deceiver) the pig is forgiven its gluttony, as it alchemically transforms anything-edible-whatsoever into tasty nutrition for humans.'

'...[we] have seen that the radically omniverous pig we love to despise – the ‘greedy pig’ – is largely an artefact of Extravagance, a cultural animal co-evolving with, and catering for the appetites of, industrialised and urbanised humans. Although it has ancient roots, the Pig Function was fully developed only during early capitalism, through an opportunistic harnessing of the animal’s latent potentialities.

The Pig Function, therefore, cannot be said to ‘belong’ to the pig at all. Actually-existing pigs, far from being – as in the popular imagination – the very model of an uncritically omnivorous creature enthusiastic to hoover up every kind of trash, whether whey powder or other animals’ excrement – merely incarnate a function nurtured by mankind. Mankind, however, is destined to usurp the pig’s role and incarnate this function itself – because pigs have no spending power. Therefore, so long as pigs monopolise the function that bears their name, they prevent it from becoming a locus for the extraction of surplus value. In short, as fat as it may be, the pig is an intolerable retard when it comes to expansion. A hostile takeover is well overdue, in order that the Pig Function fulfil its true economic potential.'


Sample Illustration – Historical Development of Extravagance in the Pig Function: Sections 5 - Mid 20th Century.

supplement cutouts

TJ45481/TJ45482 With Guardian Supplement Cutouts

A series of colour Polariod prints made using a pinhole technique. The images were made in the days leading up to the the deaths of TJ45481 and TJ45482 and feature cutouts from a Guardian newspaper supplement mounted on card.

Pig Drawings

Piglet Roundup/Offload
Digital Print Series

Series of drawings documenting the journey made by some piglets from a neighboring farm to the local slaughterhouse.