DETROIT — According to artist Koen Vanmechelen, the chicken is the most domesticated animal in the world. “It gives us a lot of food — protein and eggs,” said Vanmechelen in an interview with Hyperallergic. “But another interesting part is that it also stands for culture, because in every country, we started to breed a chicken that tells something about the country.”
Chicken is what’s on the menu for Energy/Mass, the latest installation at Wasserman Projects, which includes live avian subjects, appropriate for the gallery’s location in the Eastern Market district — home to one of the country’s oldest continuously running farmers’ markets. This inter-media exhibition is the latest iteration of Vanmechelen’s 20-year-long work, the Cosmopolitan Chicken Project, which explores ideas of genetic diversity via an ongoing global effort to crossbreed the chickens of the world.