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Schuldfabrik details

Schuldfabrik pictures

Schuldfabrik description

The 2019 Adelaide Festival will include the opening of a luxe new pop-up store, Self – Human Soap, joining Lush and Jurlique as our go-to soap dispensaries. But this one is a little different...

What if there was a way, akin to carbon trading, of absolving guilt by creating ‘positive outcomes’ for society from the by-products of quick-fix weight loss? Dutch artist Julian Hetzel’s sustainable solution for up-cycling the excesses of the West to the third world is a business that takes the donated fat from liposuction patients and repurposes it into beautiful soap for a discerning clientele. And with every bar purchased the customer is doing good because sale proceeds help wells to be dug in a village in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (accompanied by a bar of soap donated for every bar of soap sold). The human fat is thereby converted into clean drinking water and hygiene: is this a perfect synthesis of third world aid, repurposed first world waste and new economic value from the ancient human pursuit of the body beautiful? Schuldfabrik (the double-edged word “schuld” suggests both “guilt” as a moral duty and “debt” as an economic obligation) is a performative installation guaranteed to leave you speechless.

“Made from people for people” is the by-line.

Seeing is believing. This one is mind-blowing.

You can also see Julian Hetzel speak in the Festival Forums on Wednesday 13 March at 12:30pm.

You will get a well thought-out trip through the pure and impure ingredients of this ingenious mixture.


For the audio version of this event page, click here.

Human fat as a symbol of guilt, used in a product to cleanse yourself. Genius, and cleverly embedded throughout the performance.


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