By Yasmijn Jarram

Koen Vanmechelen works with a large variety of media. He paints and draws, takes photographs, shoots videos, as well as creating installations, glasswork and even wooden sculptures. An important recurring theme in all these manifestations relates to the chicken and the egg, which the artist regards as important symbols. Science plays an important role in his work. Vanmechelen works in close collaboration with scientists and doctors from a wide range of disciplines.

This artist is particularly famous because of his 'Cosmopolitan Chicken Project', an international study – still in progress – whereby he is cross-fertilising as many possible species of chicken with one another, which should eventually result in a super-bastard chicken. This chicken will carry the genes of all the chicken species that exist in the world. It will not be a particularly superior species that survives, but the bastard. This is Vanmechelen’s analogy for our multicultural society.