A lot of people find human hair disgusting when not attached to a head (I know I had some previous roommates who did) but I never really understood that reaction. Sure, I don’t like eating hair, but if I find one my food I generally just remove it quietly and keep eating. We leave little pieces of ourselves everywhere—skin cells and hairs and tiny bits of gnawed-off nails—that it seems inevitable that we’ll be in constant contact with human debris.
Anyway, I’m thinking about this partially because I came across the work of Jenine Shereos on Notcot. She crafts these incredibly delicate, impossibly intricate leaves out of human hair. She stitches and weaves and knots the hair until it creates this perfect little skeleton. I can’t even imagine the patience that it takes.
She also has something really interesting to say about the project. From her website:
The complex network of lines present in this work mimics the organic patterns found in nature and speaks to the natural systems of transformation, growth and decay. Allusions to the vascular tissue of plants, as well as the vascular system of the human body, exist simultaneously; the delicate trace of a hair falling silently, imperceptibly, from one’s head becoming the veins of a leaf as it falls from a tree leaving its indelible imprint on the ground below.
I’ve always liked the way veins all look the same. How, if you hold your hand up to a light, you can see little traces that look just like leaves. Or rivers, when seen from above.